Oh this is good! Such a friendly recipe, so delicious! What got me were the words apple and cinnamon. They whisked back to my days as a young boy watching my mum bake wonderful treats – jam tarts, pies and the like. This is a recipe that truly is what baking is all about. Readily available pantry items and so flexible with the fruit/flavorings you want to add.

I had initially wanted to bake something with grapes. Concord grapes are in season and if you have not tried these, they are outstanding grapes. They have a lovely sweet taste and a smooth texture, seedless, small and dark. I thought it would be nice to make some Grape and Sea Salt Focaccia that evening. When I got home though, I started to leaf through some of my favorite cooking sites and this recipe for apple and yogurt cake caught my eye. It read well and l could taste the end product as I was reading it. Why not –I thought, add the grapes to this cake recipe. So that’s what I did. I removed about 1 cup of apple and added 1 cup of grapes. You can vary the quantities of each item, but like with any other baking recipe, keep the proportions the same. Try this cake, I know you will like it!

The coconut caramel sauce was just an afterthought. You see I cut the cake and put it on the plate but it looked rather lonely. I could have added ice cream or whipped cream, but a caramel sauce just seemed to be the right thing to do. Really simple, melt the sugar and water until it turns a nice amber color, then add about ½ cup coconut milk off the heat. It puts a lovely tropical twist on the cake.

Since I first tried this cake, I have also made another version with apples and blueberries. Peaches and plums are next on my list, maybe reduce the amount of cinnamon and add some fresh thyme. Possibilities are endless. As always – enjoy!

1 1/2 cups Greek yogurt
2/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups diced apples, Royal Gala work well
1 cup concord grapes
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

Heat the oven to 350°f and lightly grease a 9″x13″ baking pan with baking spray and line with parchment paper leaving an overhang to make removal of the cake from the pan easier
Whisk together the yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl
Peel and core the apples, and chop into chunks about 1/2-inch across – stir the chopped apple and the grapes into the liquid ingredients
Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon right into the liquids and stir just until no lumps remain
In a small separate bowl, mix the remaining 2 teaspoons cinnamon with the brown sugar and butter
Pour half of the batter into the cake pan
Sprinkle the batter with half of the cinnamon-brown sugar mixture, dropping it on the batter in small lumps
Spread the rest of the batter over top, and sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon-brown sugar
Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, covering with foil at the end if the top is browning too much
When a tester comes out clean, transfer the cake to a cooling rack and let it cool for at least 15 minutes in the pan before cutting
Serve the cake warm or at room temperature

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