Of all the seasons, fall is one of my favorites (and not because that ended up being my nick-name through most of High School). I love using all the fall produce in my cooking and baking. Apples are one of my favorites, because they seem distinctly fall (watch for my how-to on candy apples coming up).
This is an adaptation of this recipe found on MarthaStewart.com. I loved the cake recipe, but wasn't fond of the idea of putting buttercream (but I'm not big on buttercream anyway) on a fruity cake.
Triple-Decker Apple Cake with Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting
2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pans
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups packed light-brown sugar
2 large eggs
4 apples (I used Gala, which were fantastic. If you would like the cake a little more tart, use the Granny Smith. I think I will try Granny Smith the next time I make this)-peeled, two coarsely grated and two diced
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter three 8" round cake pans; line bottoms with parchment paper. Butter and flour paper and sides.
In a medium bowl; whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.
In a large bowl, whisk together butter, sugar, and eggs until well combined; fold in grated and diced apples. Add flour mixture; mix just until combined. Divide batter among prepared pans; smooth tops.
Bake until cake top springs back when pressed lightly with your finger (about 25 to 30 minutes). Cool cakes in pans 5 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pans, then invert onto wire racks; peel off parchment. Invert cakes again, and let cool completely on racks.
8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 c. brown sugar
3/4 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 pint heavy whipping cream
In the bowl of a stand mixer (using the whisk attachment), beat cream cheese and sugars until fluffy (scrape bottom of the bowl to ensure all the cream cheese is incorporated). Add vanilla and continue to beat. With the mixer on medium-low, gradually beat in whipping cream (you may need to stop several times to scrape the cream cheese from the bottom and sides of the mixer, ensuring it gets incorporated without any lumps). Once all the cream is incorporated, turn mixer up to high and beat until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes).
Place one cake layer on a serving plate; top with frosting. Top with another layer; spread top with frosting. Top with third layer; spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Refrigerate at least 1 hour (or up to 2 days). To serve, bring cake almost to room temperature.
I apologize for not having a pretty picture of the cake. We took it to an event last night, so I wasn't able to get the picture I wanted (you know the one on the whole cake with just one slice missing from it).