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Country Living Great Cakes
by The Editors of Country Living
This jewel-toned cake is a showcase for some of the fall season's classic flavors. Just a touch of honey makes the fruit topping glisten. Garnish the serving plate with lady apples and cranberries for some seasonal color.
Makes 12 Servings (one 9-inch Cake)


• 2 tablespoons butter, softened
• 1/3 cup sugar
• 2 tablespoons honey
• 2/3 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
• 2 Fuji or Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced

• 2 cups all-purpose flour
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
• 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
• 1 1/3 cups sugar
• 2 large eggs
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1/3 cup buttermilk
• Cranberries, lady apples, and fresh mint sprig (optional)

PREPARE THE PAN: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the rim from a 9-inch springform pan and place two 12-inch squares of waxed or parchment paper over the bottom of the pan. Carefully replace the rim, leaving the edges of the paper outside the pan. Smooth the edges up over the side of the pan. Generously coat the inside of the pan with vegetable-oil cooking spray.

2. PREPARE THE CRANBERRY-APPLE TOPPING: Spread the butter over the bottom of the prepared pan and top with the sugar and honey. Arrange 3 tablespoons cranberries around the outer edge of the pan bottom. Arrange overlapping apple slices in a circle inside the cranberries, leaving a 2 1/2-inch space in the center. Arrange the apple slices around the edge, forming a circle, and fill with the remaining cranberries.

3. MAKE THE BATTER: Combine the flour, cloves, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl with a mixer set on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture by thirds, alternating with the buttermilk and ending with the dry ingredients, until a smooth batter forms.

4. BAKE THE CAKE: Spoon the batter evenly over the Cranberry-Apple Topping. Place the springform pan in a shallow baking pan. Bake the cake until a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean—60 to 75 minutes. (The top of the cake will appear quite brown because of the cloves— this does not indicate that it is baked through.) Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Use a knife to loosen the cake from the pan sides. Place a serving plate, upside down, on top of the cake. Using pot holders and holding the serving plate and pan together tightly, carefully invert the cake. Remove the rim of the pan, then remove the pan bottom and peel off the waxed paper. Cool the cake until ready to serve. If not served within 2 or 3 hours, cover and refrigerate. Set out at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. If desired, garnish plate with cranberries, lady apple, and mint.

Nutrition Information Per Serving Without Cranberries, Lady Apple, Or Mint— protein: 4 G; Fat: 11 G; Carbohydrate: 53 G; Fiber: 2 G; Sodium: 265 Mg; Cholesterol: 62 Mg; Calories: 320.


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