Hard Apple Cider Holiday Loaf Cake

Hard Apple Cider Holiday Loaf Cake

Baking with hard cider provides a way to integrate the lush flavors into something delicious without retaining the alcohol. We love this cake for its seasonal flavors that warm and bring comfort to the darker, cold days.

Serves: 20
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook time: 75-90 min

Ingredients

Soaked fruit mixture ingredients (prepare the day ahead):

2 c finely chopped dried apples
1¼ c chopped dark raisins
1¼ c chopped golden raisins
¾ c of Two Towns Bad Apple Cider

Fruitcake ingredients:

1½ c Unbleached all-purpose flour
½ t baking powder
1 t ground cinnamon
1 t ground ginger
¼ t ground nutmeg
1 t kosher salt
1 stick of softened butter (4oz)
½ c golden (light) brown sugar
5 large eggs
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and coarsely grated
¾ c of roughly chopped walnuts (halves and pieces are ok)

Apple cider glaze ingredients:

½ c honey
¼ c apple cider
1 T butter
Dash of salt

Steps

Soaked fruit mixture:

Prepare the soaked fruit mixture the day before. In a medium bowl, whisk together all ingredients. Let soak overnight in a covered food storage container at room temperature.

To assemble the cake:

Preheat oven to 325˚F. If not using a convection oven, rotate loaves halfway through the baking process. Prepare 2 (8”x4”) loaf pans. Spray with cooking spray, line with parchment paper and dust them with flour.

To prepare the cake:

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside. Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment cream together butter and brown sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Add 5 large eggs one at a time. Eggs should be room temperature. The mixture will appear slightly broken but that is normal. Over low speed add flour mixture until just incorporated, stop mixer halfway through. Using a rubber scraper, scrape the bowl to make sure you incorporate all of the ingredients.

Remove the bowl from the stand and add the Granny Smith apple, walnuts, and soaked fruit mixture. Mix with a rubber scraper until all of the fruit is incorporated into the batter mixture. This is a thick, heavy batter. Place half of the batter in each of the prepared loaf pans.

Loaves should bake for 75 to 90 min. until the tops are golden brown. The loaves will pull away slightly from the edges of the pan. Garnish with the apple cider glaze.

To prepare the apple cider glaze:

Combine honey, apple cider, butter, and salt. Boil until mixture thickens enough to lightly coat your spoon. Let cool down a bit. While still a bit warm, brush with a pastry brush on top of the loaf.