BAKING cakes and sweet bakes

Apple Crumb Cake

April 11, 2009
Apple Cake

It has been a year of chasing aunts, cousins and their friends to get this book to reach me. Sometimes people had excess baggage and sometimes phones calls just didn’t go through. So on my trip to the States, I finally got my hands on it!

I finally have my own copy of Dorie Greenspan’s Baking – From My Home to Yours! Now I don’t need to scout the internet for recipes “adapted” from this book or satiate myself with just the first few pages of the online preview copy. At last, I can bake from this book at my whims.

I have gone through the book several times by now and yet each time, I’m intrigued by a new recipe. I think of something to bake when I’ve got particular ingredients at hand, for example figs, and there is not one but a number of recipes for it. How could I ever look at another source?!

The first recipe I was drawn towards was the gorgeous blueberry crumb cake. The crumb topping looked perfectly crisp and golden and the cake looked so soft, velvety and moist. I had to make this! I switched the blueberries for apples because that is something I couldn’t carry all the way here.

Apple cake: Moist interior
soft, velvety interior

Apple Crumb Cake
Adapted from: Baking from my home to yours
Yeild: 6 servings

Crumb topping:
5 tbsp butter, cold
¼ cup sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar
½ cup flour
¼ tsp salt
½ cup walnut, chopped

For the cake:
1 large apple, peeled, cored and diced
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp cinnamon, ground
2/3 cup sugar
8 tbsp butter (100g)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup yoghurt

Apple cake: Crumb topping
crispy, golden crumb layer

Making the crumb topping:
Mix together all the ingredients except the walnuts. You could do this either manually (using a fork or a pastry blender) or pulse it in a food processor. Next, stir in the nuts. Refigerate until needed.

Making the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C. Butter an 8 inch square or circular pan.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the sugar and the butter with a hand mixer until light and airy, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for a minute after each addition.
  5. Reduce the speed now and add the flour in 3 parts and yoghurt in 2 parts alternately; starting and ending with flour.
  6. You will have a very thick batter. Stir in the chopped apples.
  7. Transfer the batter in the buttered pan and even out the top with a spatula.
  8. Get the crumb topping out of the fridge and break it apart using a fork. Then sprinkle it over the batter.
  9. Bake for 50-60 minutes or until the crumbs are golden and a skewer comes out clean.

You will *love* this cake. I can’t wait to bake this again!


  • Reply Arundathi April 11, 2009 at 4:58 PM

    that does look lovely. bookmarked, for sure.

  • Reply Varunavi April 11, 2009 at 1:29 PM

    Lovely cake,looks delicious……….

  • Reply Pearl April 11, 2009 at 1:53 PM

    mm that crumb looks so nom!

  • Reply Momof1 April 11, 2009 at 7:32 PM

    This coffee cake looks and sounds amazing! Yum! : )

  • Reply Shaheen April 11, 2009 at 8:38 PM

    Varunavi: Thank you so much :)

    Pearl: You must give it a shot!

    Arundathi: This was sooo good. I want to bake it right now but my mom’s controlling the family’s sugar levels. Hehe

    Laura P.: Thanks for stopping by, hope to see you around more often. :)

  • Reply Aparna April 11, 2009 at 11:11 PM

    The texture of your cook is gorgeous. I know what you mean about getting your own copy. My sister is coming down end of this month and I can hardly wait for a “few of my own” baking books she’s bringing.:0

  • Reply Zita April 12, 2009 at 4:07 AM

    Mmm…looks so crispy and yet smooth :)

  • Reply Shifa Firoz April 13, 2009 at 7:39 PM

    **LOVE** ur blog Shaheen.. This cake is baking in my oven right now :)

  • Reply Shifa Firoz April 13, 2009 at 8:02 PM

    **LOVE** ur blog Shaheen.. this cake is baking in my oven right now!

  • Reply Shaheen April 13, 2009 at 8:57 PM

    Thanks so much Shifa! :) So happy you enjoy my blog :D

  • Reply dhruv July 2, 2009 at 3:50 PM

    This is something I an definitely gonna try!!
    Have you tried this with Ice Cream?

  • Reply Shaheen July 3, 2009 at 1:22 AM

    Dhruv, you must. this is my new favourite simple, everyday cake. This would be great with ice cream but I haven't tried it. Need to plan a little ahead of time and make sure I get myself a tub of ice cream or make it!

  • Reply Anonymous December 23, 2009 at 10:22 PM

    How do I measure cold butter in the TBSP?( for the crumb topping) I googled to see how many grams it wud be and it shows around 70 gms.. is that what u used? Thanks..

    umm maryam

  • Reply The Purple Foodie December 24, 2009 at 12:37 AM

    Hey Maryam,

    If you're in the USA, your butter will have lines marked for where you must cut to get 1,2 3 tbsp tablespoons, etc. However, what you've looked up is absolutley perfect. You should use 70g of butter for this recipe..

  • Reply Anonymous December 25, 2009 at 1:32 PM

    Thanks a lot. Made it yesterday and loved it : )

    umm maryam from india : )

  • Reply Crafted February 4, 2010 at 10:03 AM

    Oh Shaheen! it turned out just PERFECT. My mom is so proud of me!


  • Reply oov February 18, 2010 at 1:57 PM

    Well shaheen, i think its time for me to speak up :).. been a while i have been visiting your blog everyday but never opened up my heart till now! i soooooo love your blog, the pics, they way you narrate things happening around you, your flow of language & everything about it (purple is my favourite color too!). I'm into cooking for the past couple of yrs now (& yes after i was tied the knot!) & also into baking. I always wanted to try some of your recipes out & the right time hit me last evening. I baked this apple crumb cake, thou with slight alterations & it was a big success! hurraay! nothing like tasting the fruit (cake here!) of success ;). I used 3/4cup of wheat flour+ 1 & a quarter cup of AP flour, for some reason i dont find it comfortable to use AP flour alone ;) & cashews+almonds since there were no walnuts in my pantry. Keep up with your awesome work & thankyou so much for sharing those wonderful recipes with us! btw.. i forgot to tell ya our plan this evening- to gobble it down topped with vanilla icecream !!!

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  • Reply Ruthie July 26, 2010 at 2:01 PM

    Hello Shaheen,

    This recipe is great, I am surely trying this one out for my uncle’s birthday :-)

    Just a few doubts, when you say 2 cups, which cup measurement are you using? Are you using the standard cups & spoons measurement we normally get? Also for brown sugar, I have the demerara sugar, is that ok to use, can i pwder it and use? thanks a ton!

    • Reply The Purple Foodie July 27, 2010 at 2:05 AM

      Hey Ruthie, 2 cups is approximately 250g. I use standard American measuring cups. Demerara sugar is perfectly fine! Happy birthday to your uncle. He’s lucky to have his niece bake him a cake. :)

  • Reply Anonymous November 13, 2010 at 10:28 AM

    hey shaheen,
    there yogurt in this reciepe, would that mean std dahi frm stores or homemade lill sour dahi??

  • Reply sonal November 13, 2010 at 10:29 AM

    hey shaheen,
    there yogurt in this reciepe, would that mean std dahi frm stores or homemade lill sour dahi??

  • Reply trudy November 13, 2010 at 5:21 PM

    Thank you for the recipe. I been makiing a similar
    apple cake. This seems easier. Cant wait to try it.

  • Reply Huma March 14, 2011 at 9:27 AM

    Hey shaheen,

    I baked this and it turned out yummm !!!! thanks !!

  • Reply Ann April 14, 2011 at 12:15 PM

    Hey… you’ve mentioned vanilla extract in the ingrediets but haven’t really used it anywhere. Can you mention when exactly are we supposed to put it in….. thanks :)

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  • Reply Archana October 20, 2011 at 10:25 AM


    This turned out awesome nd a supper dupper hit at recent potluck..Thanks a lot..Dunno hw many more times I might say this..nevertheless u truly deserve this gal..kudos to u..

  • Reply Christine November 22, 2011 at 9:47 AM

    Hi! This looks so yummy! Can I substitute sour cream or greek yogurt fo the plain yogurt??

    • Reply The Purple Foodie November 22, 2011 at 11:36 AM

      Of course, you can!

      • Reply Christine November 22, 2011 at 11:15 PM

        Thank you for responding! One other quick question, will it offset the recipe too much by adding more apples?

  • Reply The Purple Foodie November 23, 2011 at 12:28 AM

    I reckon another apple will be fine. Just might increase baking time because of increase in moisture…

  • Reply Pritz December 1, 2011 at 10:53 PM

    Hi I tried this read this recipe today and then couldn’t stop myself from trying it and as I imagined it turned out awesome and we all really enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  • Reply Priyanka December 19, 2011 at 9:07 AM

    Hey.. finally made this recipe yesterday after bookmarking it umm.. well over a year ago. SO So good. But did anyone else feel like the cinnamon needs to be upped a bit? I added 1/2 tsp but still felt it was a bit mild.. maybe add some to the crumb topping too?

    • Reply Anjali December 24, 2012 at 9:58 AM

      Yes, Priyanka, I agree. Def. can be added to the crumb topping too. Now that I’ve made it once, I’m game to experiment the next time.

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  • Reply rekha narula January 11, 2012 at 8:57 AM

    I would like to make this with blueberries. But here the most readily available are the canned ones….suggestions how i can use the canned berries in this recipe?

    • Reply The Purple Foodie January 13, 2012 at 9:54 PM

      Canned ones are way too sweet, and they’ll make your cake blue. If you’re okay with that, you could scale down the sugar and then stir in the canned blueberries. Do that only if you’ve got a good understanding of batter textures (too dry/too moist) else it might not work.

  • Reply Zo-ya February 29, 2012 at 4:30 AM

    Been following your blog for some time now, first time to comment! My brother in law was visiting and made this yesterday, allow of us simply loved it! The texture was amazing!have sent some packing to my sis and nephews :-)
    Have thoroughly enjoyed reading all your articles, the one on baking supplies in Mumbai is so helpful! Thank you so much!

  • Reply Sarah March 14, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    Hi Shaheen I baked the apple crumble cake, it turned out very well thanks for sharing. I had used 11/2 apples my kids told me to increase the apple next time

  • Reply Roseann March 24, 2012 at 6:19 PM

    Yumm. Crumb Apple Cake

  • Reply Archana June 26, 2012 at 5:03 AM

    Can I use the same recipe to make muffins? Wasnt sure at baking time..Nd inputs..

  • Reply The Purple Foodie July 3, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    Yes you can!

  • Reply Anna October 13, 2012 at 6:28 PM

    Just made this cake, first thing in the morning. Am having people over for tea and this will be perfect. I just took it out of the oven and had a slice, now I’m thinking should I share or keep it all for myself! Thanks for the recipe!

  • Reply Mansi Shah October 24, 2012 at 6:02 PM

    Can you plzzzzz provide eggless version of this? I really would like to try it. But being vegetarian, I don’t know how to replace egg.


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  • Reply Anjali December 24, 2012 at 3:53 AM

    Made this yesterday. It took more effort than the cakes I usually bake, incl amt of cleaning up after; but was worth it. An elegant, unusual and delicious cake! Will be great for special occassions. Tried both with/without vanilla icecream, preferred without as the flavours are wonderful. AM wondering how to reduce the butter, so can make it more often..will, say, 1/2 cup more yoghurt and abt 1 oz less butter work? I cd also reduce the crumb topping a bit, bringing down the butter to 100 gm, rather than the current 150 gm.

    • Reply Shaheen December 25, 2012 at 11:13 AM

      Hi Anjali, Cannot quite contest that this is a very rich cake. I haven’t tried a healthier version, but what you suggest might just work. Let me know if you do try it!

  • Reply Maria February 7, 2013 at 4:02 AM

    Hi Shaheen,

    I baked the cake yesterday and it turned out to be an absolute winner. Thanks for sharing :) The recipe calls for vanilla extract but the instructions don’t mention any thing about it .. hence I left the vanilla out and it still turned out to be yummy .. Thanks once again !! :)

  • Reply yash October 10, 2013 at 8:06 AM

    absolutely lovely recipes god bless u!!!

  • Reply S January 12, 2014 at 5:16 AM

    Awesome recipe Shaheen! I substituted dark brown sugar for the light as that’s what I had at home, and drizzled a little caramel on top- tasted fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

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  • Reply Saagarika August 15, 2014 at 1:42 PM

    Hi Shaheen!
    I love your blog and everything about it. It’s got me to experiment a lot more cause all your recipes ALWAYS work well and are simply fabulous.
    I made this cake today out of an intense craving and a determination to find the perfect apple cake. And this one was a hands down winner. The crumb topping just takes the cake to the next level making it so so delicious.
    I reduced the baking soda to 1 tsp and it turned out just fine. Would another tsp make a difference? Next time i’m going to add a bit more apple cause i love bites of soft apple in the cake.
    Your blog inspires me so much Shaheen! I really want to try everything you’ve made. You’re such a star :) Thank you so much, and sorry for this long message

    • Reply Shaheen August 18, 2014 at 6:07 PM

      Hi Saagarika! You are so sweet. Thanks for taking the time to write me such a lovely message. It’s great that the recipe worked despite cutting the baking soda to 1 tsp. I haven’t tried it this way. I reckon if you increase the apples, the cake will benefit with that extra soda. Good luck!

  • Reply Judith November 30, 2014 at 11:21 PM

    Hi Shaheen, came across your blog while looking for a cake recipe to use up some apples lying forgotten in my fridge. Your pictures totally enticed me & through the week all I could think of was that moist, golden crumb. Finally made it today & ohmigosh, it was soooo delicious :) I did tweak the recipe a little – cut down on the total sugar measure, increased the proportion of brown to white sugar, added more cinnamon to the cake batter as well as putting in an extra apple. It still only took an hour to bake and the cake came out amazing in both texture & taste! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe!!!

  • Reply Shivani Sood December 6, 2014 at 5:49 PM

    This is my second cake which I tried from your blog. My Apple Crumb Cake was just amazzzzing :D Each & every bite was just so heavenly. Keep adding such amazing stuff on your blog & keep inspiring us :)

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