I am not confused. It is not fall here nor most likely where you are either which is especially apparent if you are under five feet of snow. But who says that pumpkin anything must be reserved for Fall? We don’t reserve wonderful things like chocolate nor vanilla beans for one season. Yes, the argument perhaps is that pumpkins are not growing right now, and ideally we should use ingredients that grow locally and are fresh, but sometimes we just may happen to have a left over can (or 10…I stockpile) of organic pumpkin puree that needs to be used.
As the bitter cold rain poured down this morning and I was sadly reminded that we are in the depths of winter, I was rudely awakened at 4:45 AM by my Golden Retriever, Sadie, and her visiting cousin,Chloe, a Terrier. They “nudged” me from my slumber with licks and random paws poking my stomach and I finally waved the white flag and crawled out of bed. Drowsily, I tiptoed down the stairs and, of course, wanted to bake. I mean who doesn’t want to bake at 5:00am? You don’t? Well then I won’t call or text you at that hour—unless I am REALLY bored. Ok?
As I pulled out a cookbook, a torn magazine page from an old Cooking Light issue floated to the ground. And then, in a glowing iridescent hue, the recipe for Pumpkin Apple Crumb Cake seemed to jump off the page, and I felt like a miner back in the Gold Rush days and wanted to shout “Eureka!” But I didn’t. My son, daughter and hubby were happily asleep and as much as I like company in the morning (besides two wrestling, noisy dogs), I have learned that they are much happier campers when I let them sleep (B-O-R-I-N-G!)
After my first exuberant gut reaction, I questioned if I “should” bake something with pumpkin in WINTER?! But then I came to my senses and adamantly decided to step out, waaaay out and take a walk on the wild side and whip up this autumn spiced pumpkin apple cake. It filled my house with the aromas of fall and while rain drenched my backyard and I cranked up the heater, I was reminded of gentler weather, bright orange leaves and fresh pumpkins sitting on my counter tops.
And when I finally had a slice, oh heaven. It was pumpkin-y, spicy and spongy with a nice soft crumb and a slightly crispy brown sugar topping. If being great tasting isn’t enough for you, it also happens to be LOW-FAT, low in calories and high in the the good for you stuff that your body needs.
So, if you are beaten down by winter’s freezing bite, wistfully dreaming of Fall and missing some of your favorite spices and flavors, go crazy, whip this up and step outside the box. Take a little walk with me on the wild side. I know you won’t be disappointed.
Pumpkin Apple Crumb Cake
Low-Fat (3.8 g) , Low-Calorie (284) and Very Delicious!
Inspired by Cooking Light but changed up quite a bit to Genify it.
Makes 10 slices, one slice per serving.
3 T. brown sugar (I used dark)
3 T. all-purpose flour
2 T. cold unsalted butter, cubed into small pieces
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. apple sauce, unsweetened
1/2 c. pumpkin puree (not pie spiced)
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 1/4 c. all purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. ground cinnamon
1/2 t. ground nutmeg
1/8 t. ground cloves
1/2 t. salt
1/4 c. nonfat Greek Yogurt (if you don’t have this use 1/4 c. of buttermilk or regular milk instead…it’s fine)
1/4 c. low-fat milk
2 thinly sliced apples (leave peel on)
For the Topping: Crumble the three ingredients together in a small bowl with your hands until grainy with small pearls of the butter left clumped together. Set aside.
For the cake: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9 or 10 inch round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium bowl, beat together (with a whisk) the granulated sugar through the eggs. In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour through the salt. Pour liquid mixture into dry ingredients and stir together with rubber scraper (do not whisk any more…will form more gluten once liquids meets dry ingredients and will toughen your cake).
Add yogurt and milk and stir until just combined. Slice up your apples with peel on in thin slices about 1/8 inch thick. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and top with the apples in a wheel patter (think spokes of a bicycle). See?
Sprinkle crumb mixture evenly over the apples and bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean in the center. The toothpick test is important for this cake. It is a moist coffee type cake and the only way to tell if it’s cooked all the way through is with the toothpick test.
Serve warm with coffee. It’s the best way to eat it.