Recipe: Jordan Rondel's apple, hazelnut and rosemary cake

Rosemary gives this spice-laced cake an almost savoury flavour.
EMMA BOYD

Rosemary gives this spice-laced cake an almost savoury flavour.

For me, this cake embodies autumn. With its warming spices, crunchy hazelnuts and fresh apple chunks, it is perfect served with a cup of hot milky tea.

The rosemary may seem an unusual addition, but it really enhances the flavour and adds an almost savoury note.

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APPLE, HAZELNUT AND ROSEMARY CAKE
Serves 12

150g butter, softened
125g light muscovado sugar or coconut sugar (or regular soft brown sugar)
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 organic eggs
150g flour
50g ground almonds
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice  
2 tsp baking powder
½ cup Greek yoghurt 
50g roasted hazelnuts, chopped 
2 apples, peeled, cored and cubed
leaves from one large sprig fresh rosemary (about 2 tbsp)

Icing:
150g butter, softened
2 cups icing sugar, sifted
125g cream cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract with seeds
1 tsp cinnamon 

Decoration:
few fresh sprigs rosemary 

Preheat the oven to 175C fan bake. Line a 22cm diameter tin with baking paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until pale, light and fluffy. Add vanilla and then eggs, one at a time. Sift in flour, ground almonds, spices and baking powder. Add yoghurt and mix. Stop mixer once all ingredients are combined. Do not over mix. 

By hand, fold through hazelnuts, apple and rosemary. Pour batter into tin and spread out to the sides.

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Bake for about 40 minutes or until golden in colour, springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto a rack.

Meanwhile, make icing. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and vanilla until smooth and then gradually add icing sugar. Add cream cheese gradually and continue to beat until light and fluffy. Fold through cinnamon by hand.

Once cake is cool, ice and decorate with fresh rosemary. Serve with Greek yoghurt or mascarpone. Store in a cool, dry place in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

 - Stuff

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