I don’t know about you guys, but I really enjoy watching Australia’s Masterchef. I think George, Gary and Matt do an excellent job at hosting the show. The British, American and the Dutch Masterchef have got nothing on the Australian version of the show. In my opinion, the Aussie’s can’t be beaten. They’ve got it down! There are several reasons for this success, but three which stand out to me. 1. Every contestant is treated with respect. Nobody has to suffer verbal abuse (which is the case for the American Masterchef. But hey, Gordon Ramsay is the host. Need I say more?). 2. The contestants treat each other with respect and are supportive of each other. In the American Masterchef they are so competitive. They will almost kill each other to win the contest. 3. They often have famous (guest) chefs on the show. I must give the British version credit for having Michel Roux Jr though. But…I WANT MORE!
Usually the contestants have to make a recipe created by the guest chef. As is the case for this recipe. This apple olive oil cake is a recipe from Maggie Beer, who has been on the show a couple of times. She’s a lovely chef and very down to earth, what is what most people seem to love about her. Her recipes are, what I think, Australian country cooking. But with somewhat more delicate flavors than seen in some American country dishes. She’s very much into organic produce and even has her own line of products that come from her own farm.
This recipe is some work, but it is worth it. The olive oil cake is moist as can be has a slight tang to it from the apple poaching liquid. The rosemary is a nice addition, because it gives this cake an extra dimension. I would, however, use slightly less rosemary next time. If you can’t get verjuice, I would substitute for a non-acidic apple juice. I used a regular apple juice which was a bit overpowering, I thought. So use either a mild apple juice or the fresh (cloudy) apple juice for best results.
Olive oil, apple and rosemary cake with sabayon
4 pink large lady apples, peeled, cut into 8ths and core removed
1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Olive oil cake
3 eggs, separated
125 gr caster sugar
75 gr plain flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
60 ml extra virgin olive oil
60ml reserved apple poaching liquid
¼ cup caster sugar
Remaining reserved poaching liquid, (less 30ml for sabayon)
30ml apple poaching liquid
1 teaspoon caster sugar
2 egg yolks
Preheat oven to 175⁰C (fan forced). Grease and baking paper line the base of a 20cm spring form cake tin.
For poached apples, place apples, verjuice and rosemary in a large, deep frying pan. Cover and bring to the boil over a high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer covered for 10 minutes or until tender. Remove apples from heat and strain, reserving the liquid. Return apples to frying pan and place over a high heat, add extra virgin olive oil and sautee until apples start to colour, remove from heat. Arrange caramelised apple pieces in the base of prepared cake tin.
For olive oil cake, beat whites in a small bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add half the sugar and beat until sugar has dissolved. In a separate bowl, beat yolks and remaining sugar until pale. Sift in flour and baking powder, pour in oil and 60ml reserved apple poaching liquid and mix to combine. Gently fold in meringue, 1/3 at a time until combined. Pour mixture into prepared cake tin and bake for 35-40 minutes or until pudding springs back to the touch. Remove from oven and allow to cool in tin for 5 minutes. Remove the spring form tin collar and flip / invert pudding on to a wire cooling rack.
For glaze, pour caster sugar and remaining reserved poaching liquid (but put aside 30mls for the sabayon) into a small saucepan. Place over a medium heat and stir until sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 2 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by half.
For sabayon, place all ingredients in a heat proof bowl and place over a shallow water bath. Whisk until pale, light and frothy. Do not allow the bowl to touch the water. Control applied heat by removing bowl from the heat occasionally to cool mixture and to avoid over cooking the yolks. Whisk mixture continuously and return to heat to continue cooking as required. To check consistency, mixture should hold a trail of the number eight. When sabayon is a constancy of your liking (don’t let it get too thick) remove from the heat and whisk until cool. Pour into a serving jug.
To serve, cut into thick wedges and brush with verjuice glaze.
Source: Maggie Beer