We're launching our Cooking with Kids a - z series today with a bang and 2 delicious "A is for Apple" recipes that you can cook with kids. One is sweet and one is savoury - an apple and cinnamon loaf cake, and an apple and pork-sausage and bean casserole, perfect for warming you on winter days. Last autumn I discovered a version of this recipe in my great grandmother's recipe book from the 1900's, and I've adapted it for us. It's now a regular Saturday bake, and both kids enjoy helping and cooking along with me.
Unlike many of our recipes, this uses cups to measure instead of weight measures, but as J is working on fine-motor skills, it is an ideal recipe to make with him as he gets a lot of different movements with his hands. As a bonus, this recipe is easily adapted and we regularly make it with pear and ginger - just substitute a couple of pears for the large cooking apple, and ginger for the cinnamon.
Go to the end of the post and you can print out the apple and cinnamon loaf cake recipe and add to your own recipe binder.
Ingredients for Apple and Cinnamon Loaf Cake
1 large cooking apple
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter or soft margarine
1 + 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 + 1/2 cups of plain (all purpose flour)
1 + 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup of milk
This makes a 2lb loaf - I also use a loaf tin liner as it's easier for the kids to get out and nicer presentation.
Cooking with kids: A is for Apple and Cinnamon Loaf Cake
Cooking provides such a great opportunity to work on fine-motor skills as well as hand-eye co-ordination, and this recipe is a fantastic one. It's great to make year round but of course it's a favourite with the apples straight from the tree in the autumn or from cold store once you've picked them. We started off by peeling the apple. I love the peelers that have a chunky handle which makes them ideal for use with kids. They can grip them, and it's easier to put more pressure on them than the traditional knife style of peeler.
With the apple peeled, I cored and then split it into manageable parts for J to cut - again our fabulous safety knife was in use. It's great to get equipment that kids can use that is safe, designed for their hands and really works as well. Once the apple is chopped up put it aside until you come to make up the loaf.
Into a bowl, add the brown sugar and the cinnamon and stir until well combined - again put to the side. Measuring out via cup is great and one of the best things about this recipe is that you don't have to be that accurate - a real bonus when you are cooking with kids.
We've recently had handed down to us my husband's grandmother's electric mixer so we now mix using this however, I've also made this apple and cinnamon loaf cake with the kids by hand and turns out just as well but needs a lot more elbow grease to mix it up.
Into the mixing bowl add the white sugar and margarine/butter. Working with two hands is one area that J struggles with so pushing the mix out with a knife from the cup measure works on improving this. Then mix till it's creamed together.
Cracking eggs without ending up with the shell in the mix or the egg everywhere is a skill that kids need to learn - I have to tell you that although this recipe calls for 2 eggs we ended up using 3 as the first went outside of the mixing bowl and all over the kitchen floor. However with coaching, we managed the next egg together. and J with supervision did the final egg on it own and got it into the bowl.
Mix up the creamed sugar/butter and egg and then measure out the vanilla extract and add to the mix. Add the flour and the baking powder and mix it all together . It's quite stiff at this point so you need the milk to get it to a better consistency.
We have milk from the milkman in glass bottles, so to save that going everywhere or the bottle smashing, I poured the milk into the cup that J held over the bowl and then he poured it in. Decide what your child is capable of and tailor which parts you let them do and which you do for them with each of the recipes that we're sharing in this series.
With the mix made up, spoon half of it into a 2-lb loaf tin which you have lined.
Then add in half of the apples, pressing them down into the mix. Spoon on half of the cinnamon and brown sugar mix, and then add on the remaining cake mix. Add the final half of the apples to the top and again press down. Now sprinkle the top with the rest of the brown sugar-cinnamon mix and press in with your hand.
Place in the oven at 350F (around 200C) for 30 - 50 minutes - you will need to check from around the 30 minute point with the skew to see when the cake is done. Even with my oven at the same temperature, the cooking time varies each time. Adjust until the top is golden and the skewer comes away clear.
Put aside to cool and then after around 10 minutes turn out onto a cooling rack.
Shop this Recipe to Cook with Kids
I have a very basic stand mixer that I use with the kids - it's not fancy but it gets the job done and it's easy to clean which is essential as no matter how hard they try they can't always get the ingredients into the mixing bowl.
The apple corer and the peeler are great for kids - they have handles which don't slip and although the kids use them I also find them easy to use myself.
I have a 2lb and a 1lb loaf tin - although ideal for making bread I find they are especially useful for making cakes. Both of my tins are non-stick however I still use liners with them to make it easy to remove the cakes and store them afterward.
I have a set of plastic cups and measuring spoons that the kids use when cooking - as well as my glass and metal ones that I use. The plastic ones are easy for them to clean up afterward plus if they are dropped which happens they don't break or damage our tiles, unlike the metal and glass ones that I have.
A is for apple - cooking with kids
Each letter of the Cooking with Kids series is brought to you by a group of bloggers from around the world, sharing family-friendly recipes that you can make with kids from toddler to teens. There's advice, tips and great tasting dishes that everyone will be able to cook. Check out the A is for apple recipes that are been shared this week.
Apple Muffins from Mum in the Madhouse
Apple Cinnamon Slices from Peakle Pie
Apple Peanut butter balls from Smiling like Sunshine
Apple Dumplings from Sugar Aunts
Apple Harvest Cake from Still Playing School
Apple Oaty Crumble from Witty Hoots
Apple Muffins from Thinly Spread
Apple and Pork Sausage and Bean Casserole also from us at Rainy Day Mum
Looking for more Apple Inspiration Check out these 12 Tantalisingly Tasty Apple Recipes from Eat Simply
Make these Cakes next:
Apple and Cinnamon Loaf Cake
- 1 Large Cooking Apple
- 1/3 cup of brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2/3 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup butter or margarine
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoons and 1/2 vanilla extract
- 1 cups and 1/2 of plain all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoons and 3/4 baking powder
- 1/2 cup of milk
- Preheat the oven to 350F (around 200C)
- Grease or line a 2lb loaf tin
- Peel, core and chop the large cooking apple and set aside
- In a separate bowl mix the brown sugar and cinnamon together and set aside
- Into a large mixing bowl or mixer add the white sugar and butter/margarine and mixed until creamy in texture
- Add in the 2 eggs and vanilla extract and mix
- Combine flour and baking powder and add to the mix
- Mix well and add the milk until smooth
- Pour half of the mixture into the prepared loaf tin
- Add 1/2 the apples and 1/2 the brown sugar cinnamon mix and press into the cake mix
- Pour the remainder of the mix on top
- Into the cake top add the remaining apples and press in
- Cover with the brown sugar and cinnamon and press
- Place in the centre of the oven for 30 - 50 minutes until a skewer comes away clear
- Take out and cool and then Enjoy!