Recipe for Sussex apple cake

Here’s a solution to a problem, albeit a good one… Ever since I started teaching sewing classes four years ago I have always included homemade cakes or cookies as part of the experience.

I do my best to cater for special diets if I know about them ahead of the class. I love baking, I’m by no means a master chef but over the years my customers have asked for recipes for various cakes and bakes. I am quite hopeless at remembering to share the recipes so I have decided this is the solution to the problem – an area on my blog where I can share the recipes. I’m not going to share every recipe I bake or try only the ones I get asked for and the ones I really love!

This recipe is from The National Trust book of healthy eating by Sarah Edington. It’s a lovely book full of wholesome earthy recipes which I love. At this time of year we have lots of gorgeous cooking apples on the tree in our garden, making it a perfect time to bake apple cakes.

The book contains several apple cake recipes most of which I’ve tried, however though I thought I had made this one before it was actually the first time. It has an unusual method that once I started baking realised I had definitely not done before. Nevertheless it turned out pretty well.



225g vegetarian margarine

225g dark brown soft sugar

3 eggs

150g walnuts (chopped)

150g sultanas (or raisins)

225g wholemeal self raising flour

1/2 tsp ground cloves

400g cooking apples, peeled and chopped


How to make:

Preheat the oven 350F, 180C, gas mark 4

Grease and line the base of an 8-9″ (20-23cm) loose bottomed tin.

  1. Cream together the margarine and 175g of the sugar.
  2. Whip the eggs lightly and beat into the margarine and sugar.
  3. Combine 125g of the crushed walnuts, the sultanas, flour, chopped apple (sliced in aprocessor or grated) and add the cloves.
  4. Put half the cake mixture into the bottom of the tin, then a layer of the fruit and nut mixture on top with the rest of the cake mixture.
  5. Sprinkle with the remaining 50g of sugar and 25g of walnuts on top.
  6. Bake in the oven for 1.5hours.




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Julia Claridge

I was about 6 or 7 years old when I had my first go on a sewing machine, it was an old hand crank machine that my mum used with her patients, she was an occupational therapist. I still vividly remember watching with amazement as the tiny perfectly formed stitches were created as I turned the handle. I Grew up in the 70’s and 80’s when buying clothes was less affordable and dressmaking was an answer to updating your wardrobe more regularly. My own mother was a talented dressmaker who made most of my clothes and my sisters clothes as well as a many for herself. I soon got involved with making my clothes, I loved the whole experience of picking out fabrics, trims and a pattern to create a new outfit, then going home to make a new garment or outfit. When it came to leaving school I visited a careers advisor who asked what I wanted to do next. My answer was ..Sew! Read more...

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