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Apple Cake with Crème Fraîche | Recipe

You’ve seen this cake couple of times on my Instagram but only now I had the time to crab my camera when actually making it. This is my trusted everyday recipe for a simple apple cake with crème fraîche.

The origins of this recipe are lost in time because it’s written on a piece of paper years ago. It kind of reminds me of Russian Sharlotka because apples indeed are in the leading role in this cake. On the other hand, the process is different. And the appearance could fool you to believe that it’s a half-burned cheesecake.

What makes a great apple cake?

Obviously this is a matter of subjective taste and mood. But here’s how I’ve come to think of it and the reason why I make this relaxed cake ever so often.

Very much like quality cider, the most delicious apple cake grounds on a variety of apples. Granny Smith is not the only tart apple, experiment and use many types of apples. This cake presented in this post happens to have Lobo from our garden as well as Pink Lady, Granny Smith and Jonagold from the store. Apples are abundant all year round – using fresh & firm produce is the best way to go.

With the same logic, I enjoy everything better when the size of the slices, cubes and whatnot ARE NOT perfectly equal. For example, I cut the apple slices from 0.3cm to 0.5cm and so on. It is nice when some of the slices a bit softer than others.

Apple cake nor apple pies don’t exist in my mind without vanilla. There’s always a constant need to have custard or vanilla ice-cream on the side. Having the apple slices soaking in the flavored crème fraîche in the cake itself, there’s is no need for extra side hustle. This apple cake is soft and full of layered flavors.

Practical tips

This is a very relaxed cake to bake. What I mean by this is that it doesn’t matter if you have 3 big apples of 7 small apples. Another thing you don’t need to stress about if you fall short with the amount of crème fraîche. You’re all good with 200 grams, too.

The difference is not so much with taste but rather how you want your cake to look. If you have more apples and less of the mix, the apple slices will peak from the top.

I’ve done countless of variations with this cake. I usually add some liqueur to taste. I’ve also substituted caster sugar with muscovado sugar. I’ve had pears instead of apples. I’ve reached cinnamon and nutmeg from the pantry. So much choices, feel free to make your own version.

This time I had brown sugar based strong rum syrup. I soaked some of the apple slices in the syrup before assembling the cake. And then when the cake was cooling, I drizzled a bit more syrup on top of the cake baring in mind that this is a sweet cake and the syrup was more about extra flavor rather than extra sugar.

I bake this cake in a rather deep 21cm round springform cake pan. If your cake pan is not that deep, I suggest using a wider cake pan and adjusting the oven time. If your cake pan leaks, it’s time to buy a new one. Okay now to the recipe…

Apple cake

A Simple Apple Cake with Crème Fraîche

Print recipe
Makes/Serves: 15 Cooking time:
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat


80g butter (room temperature)
100g caster sugar
90g eggs
80g wheat flour
55g cornstarch
4g baking powder


4-5 apples

300g crème fraîche
2 medium eggs
45g sugar
1 tbsp vanilla sugar
(rum or other liqueur to taste)


  1. Pre-heat oven 175°C.  Grease the cake pan (21cm or 8inch) and use a piece of parchment on the bottom.
  2. Wash and peel the apples. Cut apple slices to the thickness of your liking.  A dash of lemon is optional. If you want to soak the apples, now is a good time to do that before making the batter.
  3. Prepare the crème fraîche mix and set aside. Weight and mix all dry ingredient for the batter, set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk butter and sugar together until fluffy and pale yellow. Add eggs into the mix. Then, finally shift and fold dry ingredients into the mix.
  5. Transfer the batter into the cake pan. Spread it evenly, no need to push it towards the walls. Add apple slices on top of the batter layer by layer. When you have two layers done, push the apples down evenly so that the batter fills the gaps.  When all the apple slices are in,  pour the crème fraîche mix into the pan.
  6. Place the cake in the bottom third of the oven and bake for approximately 60 minutes without a fan. If you want the surface a deeper burned color, relocate the cake into the middle for 5-10 minutes in the end.




The cake is ready when it starts to detach from the sides (also toothpick test). Let the cake cool for 15 minutes before loosening and removing the band. 

Did you make this recipe?
Tag me on Instagram @myvintagecooking

Apple cake

So here we are, ready to enjoy some delicious apple cake. I served you a slice earlier on instagram, now it’s your turn. ;)



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