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This is an old-fashioned New England dessert of apples topped with maple-flavoured sponge. Maple sugar is made from the sap of the maple tree, but if you can't track it down, use caster sugar instead. Make sure that the butter you use is very soft so that it folds easily into the mixture.
700g/1½lb Bramley apples - peeled, cored and cut into wedges
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp maple sugar or caster sugar
4 tbsp maple syrup
110g/4oz plain flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2 tsp baking powder
50g/2oz caster sugar
1 egg - lightly beaten
1 tsp natural vanilla extract
1 dsp maple syrup
75g/3oz butter - softened
25g/1oz icing sugar
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Butter an ovenproof dish, such as a
deep pie dish. Place the apples in the dish and add the cinnamon and maple sugar or caster sugar. Pour over the maple syrup, cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes, until the apples have softened slightly.
Sift the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking powder into a bowl, then add the sugar. In another bowl, beat the egg with the milk and vanilla extract. Slowly add this to the flour mixture, stirring all the time, but being careful not to overbeat. Add the maple syrup and keep stirring to form a batter-like mixture. Fold in the butter.
Pour the batter over the apples, ensuring it covers them completely, and return the dish to the oven. Cook, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes, until the topping is golden and firm. Dust with icing sugar and serve warm, with whipped cream or yoghurt.
From Jenny Bristow USA. Published by Blackstaff Press; the ISBN is 0856407895.
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