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German Apple Cake Recipe

Updated on March 11, 2016
Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer has been writing recipes online for almost 5 years. She enjoys coming up with unique and tasty dishes, especially sweet treats.

German Apple Cake Recipe
German Apple Cake Recipe | Source

One of my favorite things about having a mother from Germany is that, when I was growing up, she would make our family some of her favorite german recipes every once in a while. This apple cake was definitely one of those favorites.

She would make it for special occasions, and sometimes just because she felt like it. Now I make it for her, and it always brings back happy childhood memories.

What I have always loved most about this cake is that it is simple. It's not a big heavy layered cake with lots of frosting. It's just wholesome ingredients mixed together and made into a lovely light dessert.

Serve this cake with a dollop of fresh whipped cream and cup of tea, and you'll feel like you are in Germany, having afternoon tea in a sidewalk cafe or konditorei (bakery).

Did you know?

  • China grows more than 50% of the world's apples.
  • Apples are members of the rose family.
  • On average, one person eats 45 pounds of apples a year.
  • Apples are 25% air which is why they float.

Source: orangepippin.com

Apfelkuchen (Apple Cake) Recipe

Apfelkuchen - German Apple Cake - Delicious!
Apfelkuchen - German Apple Cake - Delicious! | Source

Rate my apple cake recipe

3.6 stars from 100 ratings of German Apple Cake

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 15 min
Yields: 8 cake slices

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 4 - 5 small apples, thinly sliced*
  • Sugar
  • Lemon juice
  • Cinnamon
  • Shortening

*Note: I use granny smith apples because they are not so sweet and they hold up well when baking. You can use whatever apples you would like, but I would recommend a firmer apple.

Plum Cake

Instead of using apples, substitute 10 - 15 italian plums. There is no need to peel them, just wash, pit and slice them. They add a nice fresh tartness to the cake. Prepare the recipe as directed.

Italian plums are the dark purple ones that are oval shaped.

If you like apples and cinnamon, then this light and airy apple cake is for you!
If you like apples and cinnamon, then this light and airy apple cake is for you! | Source

Baking tips for this cake

  • This is a thick dough, almost a frosting-like consistency. Make sure to spread it evenly in the pan.
  • This is not a large, thick cake. It ends up being about 2" thick. I used a 9" pan, but if you use an 8" pan, the cake will be thicker.
  • Even if your pan says it is non-stick, prepare it as directed in the recipe. This dough sticks easily.

Instructions

  1. Prepare an 8" or 9" springform pan by greasing it with shortening and lightly flouring it. Preheat the oven to 350°.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, into the butter and sugar mixture, stirring until each one is fully incorporated.
  4. Add dry ingredients into the butter mixture, stirring until mixed.
  5. Meanwhile, peel and core your apples. Thinly slice them (about 1/4" thick) and place them in a bowl. Sprinkle with a dash of cinnamon and fresh lemon juice and mix gently. Set aside.
  6. Spoon the dough mixture into the prepared springform pan. It may not look like a lot of dough, but it will rise.
  7. Place the prepared apples on top of the dough. Press them in a bit, but not all the way to the bottom of the pan.
  8. Sprinkle top of cake with some sugar and cinnamon. Bake at 350° for 1 hour. If you are using a dark pan, check it earlier or set your oven temperature down to 325°.
  9. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.

Photo instructions

Step by step photos are provided below.

Prepare dough

Combine ingredients as directed until well mixed.  Here is the apple cake dough ready for the pan.  As you can see, it is a thick dough.
Combine ingredients as directed until well mixed. Here is the apple cake dough ready for the pan. As you can see, it is a thick dough. | Source

Put the dough in the pan

Spoon the dough into the prepared pan, making sure to spread it evenly.  Remember that it is not a lot of dough, but it will rise.
Spoon the dough into the prepared pan, making sure to spread it evenly. Remember that it is not a lot of dough, but it will rise. | Source

Apfelkuchen (apple cake) ready for the oven

Place the prepared apples in a pattern of your choice.  The dough will rise and bake through the apples.
Place the prepared apples in a pattern of your choice. The dough will rise and bake through the apples. | Source

Enjoy your cake!

Pour yourself a hot cup of coffee, and cut yourself a piece of this german apple cake. Put a little whipped cream on top and enjoy!

It's a little bit like having a taste of Germany in your own backyard!

A slice of this german apple cake and a cup of tea make for a perfect afternoon break.
A slice of this german apple cake and a cup of tea make for a perfect afternoon break. | Source
Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 slice
Calories 317
Calories from Fat117
% Daily Value *
Fat 13 g20%
Carbohydrates 49 g16%
Fiber 4 g16%
Protein 3 g6%
Cholesterol 83 mg28%
Sodium 17 mg1%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

© 2013 Glimmer Twin Fan

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    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well I'm sold!

      I have never heard of apple cake. I thought it was a misprint and it was supposed to be apple pie. I live such a sheltered life. LOL

      Thanks for the recipe. I do believe Bev and I will be trying this one, since we live in the Apple Capital of the United States. :)

      I hope you are well.

      bill

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Wow, this looks great! I used to make something that has a similar look to it, Apple Streusel Kuchen, from my Mom's old cookbook. But this looks spectacular! I love anything with apples, so I am a fan of this. Thank you for sharing this recipe with us, as well as the sweet family story behind it.

      It must have been great enjoying German foods as a child.

      I like the variation you added. The Italian Plums version sounds delicious, too.

      Great job on the photos. I wish I could just reach into the screen and grab a nibble of it!

      Voted up and sharing.

      Have a wonderful day!

      ~ Kathryn

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      Glimmer thanks for the recipe! My Mom used to make this as does my sister-in-law but I never had the recipe. Your pictures are, as they say, picture perfect and this recipe will be well used.

      Voted up, useful, interesting, shared and pinned.

    • rose-the planner profile image

      rose-the planner 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      This looks absolutely scrumptious! The recipe does not look too difficult so I have got to try this. I love your images. Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up) -Rose

    • Phyllis Doyle profile image

      Phyllis Doyle Burns 4 years ago from High desert of Nevada.

      Glimmer, this looks like a fantastic cake to impress the family with. It must taste wonderful. I will have to try this for our next family gathering supper. Thank you for sharing this awesome recipe. Your photos really enhance the hub.

      Up, Useful, Awesome, Interesting, bookmarking

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 4 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      This looks wonderful. Although not of German ancestry my mother made a delicious fresh apple cake and it was one of our family favorites. Brings back such good memories. :)

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      This looks like a great recipe to use with all that wonderful summer fruit. Thanks!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
      Author

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi Bill - I hope you enjoy the recipe! It really is good and you definitely have apples in Washington. We got a basketful from a friend a couple years ago and they were good! Thanks for reading. Have a nice evening.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      I really appreciate your kind comments Kathryn. I love streusels so I bet it's good. It's hard to find those plums around here, but when I do, I usually make this cake. It's really good and a little different. Thanks again for reading and commenting and sharing too! Have a nice evening.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks so much for all of the support tillsontitan! I hope it brings back nice memories when you make it. Glad you enjoyed the hub.

    • Careermommy profile image

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Wow, this looks like the perfect apple pie for me. I love apple pie with thin slices and not overpowering with apples. This is a great recipe!

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 4 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      delicious cake ! You can bake some and open your own bakery shop! A professional baker I should say. Lovely photos-well taken and photo guides were helpful for a beginner like me. I have never add apples into my cakes. Voted useful

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks Rose - It really is not a difficult recipe, just a little time baking, but the results are awesome. Glad you enjoyed the hub. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      This is a new idea for me and you can bet I would love this with my coffee. Looks really good!

    • europewalker profile image

      europewalker 4 years ago

      I can relate, my mom was also German. I remember well all of the delicious cakes that she would make. My favorite was her Christmas Stollen. Thanks for sharing this great recipe which I will be making.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks so much Phyllis. I hope you and your family enjoy it and I appreciate your kind comments on the pictures. It was hard not to eat it before I took the photos, but I treated myself to that slice when I was done.

    • livingsta profile image

      livingsta 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Beautiful. The recipe is so simple and the cake looks delicious. Thank you for sharing this with us. Voted up, pinning and sharing!

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 4 years ago from USA

      This looks like a lovely recipe. My mom used to make apple cake as a breakfast cake, and I always liked it a lot, though hers could be a little dry. Can't wait to try this one out as it looks delicious!

    • Nancy Owens profile image

      Nancy Owens 4 years ago from USA

      What a wonderful Hub! I want to try your recipe. I also really liked the way you organized the information and the "Did You Know" capsule. You took a recipe and gave it life. Thank You.

    • Ceres Schwarz profile image

      Ceres Schwarz 4 years ago

      Wow this recipe for German apple cake looks really good. The images of the German apple cake make it look very yummy and delicious. Now I want to try some.

    • Mike Robbers profile image

      Mike Robbers 4 years ago from London

      Delicious and easy to make recipe! Great hub! Voted and pinned.

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 4 years ago from Germany

      Oh, my! I would love to have a piece of Apfelkuchen right now. Yummy! This recipe is what I have learned from my German mother-in-law. The house smells always good when baking this cake. We added raisins to the dough before baking. Thanks for reminding me of this cake. Voted up and useful;-)

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

      That looks delicious! I will have to try this sometime. :) There's nothing like those childhood recipes that get those taste buds going at the sight of the recipe. YUM! :)

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks phdast7! It is amazing how certain foods can bring back good memories. This is one of those for me and I'm glad apple cake is for you too. I appreciate you reading and commenting.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thank you Rebecca! It is good with plums. I have never tried it with any fruit other than apples and plums, but I bet it would be good too. I think it is the dough that makes it so special. Glad you enjoyed the recipe.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      I appreciate it Careermommy - This is definitely more like a cake than a pie. The dough is nice and buttery. I like this better than pie, but I have never been a big pie person. Glad you enjoyed the hub and thanks so much for the kind comments.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thank you so much peachpurple. Such nice comments. I like to bake every once in a while, but not enough to open a shop. Besides, I like to eat what I make and that would not be healthy if I baked too much. Glad you enjoyed to hub.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi teaches - I would love a piece right now, but alas it's all gone now. I'll just have my coffee instead. Thanks so much for stopping by and reading. I hope you give it a try some time.

    • Nicole S profile image

      Nicole S Hanson 4 years ago from Minnesota

      YUM. This looks delicious. My grandma used to make all kinds of German dishes, including apple cake. Great hub!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks europewalker. I love stollen, but have never made it. Hope you give this recipe a try and thanks for the kind comments.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
      Author

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi livingsta - That is exactly what I love about this cake, it's simplicity. I'm glad you enjoyed the hub and I can't wait for your to give it a try. Thanks so much for commenting.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
      Author

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi Stephanie - This is really good as a breakfast cake and I had a piece for breakfast after I wrote this hub. Of course I'd eat it at anytime. I hope you give it a try and enjoy it. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Wow - what nice comments Nancy Owens. I really appreciate that and I'm glad you want to give it a try. I enjoy writing recipe hubs, especially when the recipe is near and dear to my heart. Thanks so much for stopping by.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thank you Ceres. I had fun taking the pictures, but even more fun eating it after I was done. I appreciate the comments.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
      Author

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi Mike - Glad you liked the recipe and you are right, it is easy and takes no time, except the baking part. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Adding raisins sounds good Thelma. I might have to give that a try sometime, and you are right, boy does the house smell good when this is baking. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi cclitgirl - I know what you mean about childhood recipes, they really are special. For the most part my dad was the bigger cook than my mom, but she had a few special recipes that we all loved. Glad you enjoyed the recipe. Thanks for reading.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi Nicole S - I bet your grandmother made nice things. I really enjoy German food and this is something that anyone can make. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      You can't beat these kinds of cakes, especially when you can use so many different fruits. My mother used to make a lovely coffee cake. Your recipe really brought back some good memories.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      aviannovice - You are so right, these kinds of cakes are great and with all kinds of fruits too. I really love it with the plums. Might just have to make one. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      The cake looks delicious, Glimmer. Voted up, useful and shared. Thanks for sharing.

    • Zubair Ahmed profile image

      Zubair Ahmed 4 years ago

      Yummy - this is something I'm gonna have to try this weekend. I can just taste the hot custard and the apples pieces :0) thank you for sharing.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks so much rajan - It really is a good cake, any time of year. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
      Author

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thank you Zubair Ahmed - I hope the cake turned out well and you enjoyed it. Glad you liked the recipe.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Oh, yum, how did I miss this? For sure I will try it, and very soon. I love apple desserts and this sort of looks cobbler which I love with vanilla ice cream! Thanks so much for sharing. ^

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Thanks so much Jackie - this is awesome with vanilla ice cream and that would definitely cool things off with the heat waves that have been around. I'm glad you enjoyed the hub.

    • Claudia Tello profile image

      Claudia Tello 4 years ago from Mexico

      The consistency of this apple cake looks just the way I like it. This is a recipe I ought to try soon. I am totally excited by the delicious looking images (no wonder it has been pinned 343 times, congratulations!).

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
      Author

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Hi Claudia - This is a nice textured cake. Not overly moist and really good with tea or coffee. Hope you give it a try sometime. Thanks for commenting and reading!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

      I just baked and had a piece of your cake (two to be truthful) And I did not have ice cream with it as I had planned because it just doesn't call for it, it is very good alone. I think the buttery golden bottom set it apart from other apple pies and cakes I have eaten. Thank you for a great recipe! I plan to make another tomorrow for company.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      I'm so glad you let me know you liked it Jackie. I love the buttery cake part too. It adds such a nice flavor. Thanks for commenting.

    • seoexprtm profile image

      Jawad 3 years ago from UK

      reading this hub makes me hungry...

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      Thanks so much for reading seoexprtm.

    • oliversmum profile image

      oliversmum 3 years ago from australia

      Glimmer Twin Fan Hi. Love the look and sound of your recipes. Granny smith apples are perfect for cooking, also love the purple plum variation, so will be trying them both.

      The story of your mum was lovely.

      Thank you for the step by step instructions and the photographs, to see the finished product is great.

      I did not know that China grew that many apples, or that apples were members of the rose family. Thank you for that information. Thumbs up and very useful. :) :)

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      Thanks so much oliversmum! I can never decide if I like the plum or the apple version better. Glad you enjoyed the recipe. Hope you enjoy the cake!

    • Monis Mas profile image

      Aga 3 years ago

      Another amazing recipe with apples - perfect for the fall. I can smell it right now :-)

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      I appreciate it Monis Mas. This one would have your whole house smelling like cinnamon. Thanks for reading.

    • trusouldj profile image

      trusouldj 3 years ago from Indiana

      When Baker's Square was Poppin' Fresh, i had an Apple Pancake that looked like this. It was the best thing I'd ever had. But the next time I went to a restaurant and asked for apple pancakes, i was given an ordinary pancake with sliced apples on top. Now that I've seen your hub -- some 30 odd years later -- I believe that my Apple Pancake was basically your German apple cake. Thanks for confirming that I wasn't dreaming this whole thing up.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      Apple pancakes sound delicious trusouldj. I've never seen anything like that. Glad my hub confirmed that you didn't make the pancake up. Thanks for commenting and reading.

    • Claudia Tello profile image

      Claudia Tello 2 years ago from Mexico

      This recipe was a big hit in my family. It’s an outstanding cake, easy to make and delicious. Thanks for sharing it with us, I´m most definitely sharing it with my followers.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago

      I'm so glad you and your family enjoyed the cake and I also appreciate you coming back to let me know. Thanks also for sharing. Have a great day!

    • justmesuzanne profile image

      justmesuzanne 2 years ago from Texas

      This looks great! I wonder how it would be with firm, fresh pears. My neighbor's pear tree is just burdened with delicious pears. I can only eat so many straight off the tree! :D

      Voted up, awesome and pinned!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago

      Hi justmesuzanne - I bet it would be good with pears. Let me know how it turns out. I like the plum version too. Thanks for the support and for stopping by. Have a great day!

    • profile image

      bakerbaker candlestickM 2 years ago

      Thank you for this very traditional very tasty recipe. It reminds me the delicious cakes my German friends would make during the holidays.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago

      Thanks so much for saying this bakerbaker! It's so nice of you and like you, I love these delicious cakes. They remind me of Germany. Happy New Year.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image

      Daisy Mariposa 2 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Glimmer,

      This looks like a wonderful recipe! I wish I could have a slice (or two) right now.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago

      Hi Daisy - Thanks so much for stopping by and all of your support. I'm now craving this and may have to make it this weekend!

    • letstalkabouteduc profile image

      McKenna Meyers 2 years ago from Bend, OR

      That's an impressive looking cake. I will make it soon -- looks delicious and healthy (at least, for cake)!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago

      Thank you letstalkabouteduc! It's a yummy cake which I haven't made in a while so I'm glad you commented. It reminded me to make it again. I appreciate the visit and comments.

    • facetube profile image

      facetube 2 years ago

      All your hubs looks really professional. Great pictures, perfect description, absolutely fantastic final results - incredible desserts . Very good role model how to create recipe hub.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago

      Thanks so much facetube. I really appreciate your kind comments. I enjoy writing recipe hubs.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 21 months ago from Home Sweet Home

      wow, i really must try this cake, maybe less apples

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image
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      Glimmer Twin Fan 21 months ago

      Hi peachpurple. I hope you give it a try. I'm sure you can adjust the fruit to the amount you like. Thanks for reading.

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