Aronia Berry and Raw Apple Cake
This moist Aronia Berry and Raw Apple Cake, chuck-full of antioxidant-rich Aronia berries, will send you back for more!
Autumn is just around the corner and with it comes apple season. The time of year that reminds me of mom’s delicious pies and apple crisps. Always warm from the oven and filling the house with sweet aromas!
All apples are not the same
My husband is an apple connoisseur. He spends many weekends perfecting and bottling apple cider at DLC, Distillery Lane Ciderworks, an apple orchard in Jefferson Maryland. As the head cider maker there, he has processed some of the best hard ciders out there!
He has come to know all of the many, many types of apples they grow at DLC. Such as, those that are best for baking, for making into cider, and just plain eating.
For this cake, he suggests a blend of sweet and tart apples. His favorites are Bramley Seedling and Rhode Island Greening, which are available at the cidery. Other sweet-type apples include Fuji, Gala, and Honeycrisp. For tart apples look for Granny Smith, McIntosh, and Empire.
He is the one that has perfected this “Raw Apple Cake” and it has become very well known and enjoyed by the family and his cohorts at the cidery. The cake is baked and the apples are not actually raw, however, the name has stuck. Perhaps because there are more apples than cake!
Apples are high in fiber and vitamin C. They are low in calories and also possess an antioxidant quality. For example, apples are high in polyphenols which provide protection against many health conditions such as diabetes, heart problems, and aging.
I recently discovered that there are several Aronia berry bushes at the cidery. Aronia berries are an exceptionally healthy “superfood” which are rich in antioxidants and therefore, help improve immunity. Something we all need more of right now.
Also known as chokeberries, they grow on a shrub and are in the Rosaceae family. Aronia berries are not really meant for eating raw. By themselves, they are sour and leave a very dry feeling in your mouth making you “pucker”. Often they are processed into wine, jam, or syrup. Because of their health benefits however, Aronia berries are becoming more popular and finding their way into baked goods, smoothies and main dishes.
Right now in the early fall, Aronia berries are ripe for picking, and my husband brought home a large basket, along with several baskets of apples.
“Let’s combine the two”
As he was getting ready to make his Raw Apple Cake (which is usually made in a large enough quantity to make two or three cakes) I suggested we add Aronia berries to one of the cakes. In other words, “let’s experiment”.
In the end, the Aronia Berry and Raw Apple Cake was delicious and the Aronia berries add the perfect “tang” to the cake. They also add a bit of color and texture. Even after baking, you still “bite” into the Aronia berries. They soften but stay firm. Give the recipe a try!
Aronia Berry and Raw Apple Cake
- 8" or 9" square baking pan, lightly greased.
- 4 cups Apples, chopped
- 1/2 cup Sugar, divided
- 2 Tbsp Cinnamon
- 1 cup All-purpose flour
- 1 large Egg
- 1 Tbsp Corn oil
- 1 1/2 tsp Baking powder
- 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1/2 Cup Aronia berries
- 1 Tbsp Brown sugar, crumbled for top
- Chop the apples and place in a large bowl.Add the cinnamon and a tablespoon or two of the sugar and set aside for 15 minutes to get some of the juice out.
- Mix all the remaining dry ingredients including the remaining sugar.Mix the egg and oil into the apples and add the dry ingredients slolwy, mixing well. The batter and apple mixture will be stiff.Fold in the aronia berries, being careful not to crush them.
- Spread the mixture into the prepared, lightly greased baking pan, and crumble the brown sugar on top.
- Bake the cake for 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool and set-up for 15 minutes before cutting.
Nutrition information: Calories: 166, Total fat: 2 grams, Cholesterol: 0 grams, Sodium: 250 milligrams, Sugars: 20.5 grams, Protein: 2.4 grams.