Gâteau Invisible (Unnoticeable Apple Cake) Dish

[Photographs: Tim Chin, unless otherwise noted]

Leave it to the French to create a cake that stimulates a sense of secret. Gâteau undetectable aux pommes, or “undetectable apple cake,” includes lots of converging layers of very finely sliced up apples bound in a sweet, custardy batter. Why undetectable? When baked, the apples appear to vanish into the cake, and end up being texturally equivalent from the custard, forming a cohesive, sliceable dessert that’s distinctly more fruit than cake. (Apple a day? How about an entire cake’s worth of apples.) It’s typically served with nuts and a caramel sauce. Believe sweet apple gratin, however simply a hair fancier.

Regardless of its French origins, gâteau undetectable has actually discovered specific appeal in Japan. As a nod to that cultural-geographic pairing, I wished to integrate miso into this variation of the dessert. While miso is understood for being an ultra-salty, umami-packed dressing mainly utilized in mouthwatering meals, it can likewise be an important part in sweet meals. As bakers, we are taught to utilize salt to boost the taste of baked products: Simply a little pinch of salt brings intricacy, lowers our understanding of bitter tastes, and balances desserts that would otherwise be exceedingly sweet. Miso has these qualities in spades. When utilized carefully, it provides nutty, caramel-like tastes that blend flawlessly with cold-weather tastes like butterscotch, pumpkin, and, obviously, apple.

This cake starts with a loose batter of eggs and flour, together with a generous assisting of white miso. Very finely sliced up apples are folded into the batter, then filled into a pan and baked. I checked various baking vessels, from big springform pans to square aluminum brownie pans, however discovered that a basic one-pound aluminum loaf pan produced the most remarkable, consistent pieces. When it comes to assembly, I attempted numerous techniques varying from just discarding whatever into the pan to carefully organizing the apples in a smooth pattern. In the end, I discovered it essential to organize the apple pieces such that their flat sides are flush with the edges of the pan, while filling the areas in between with a more random overlapping pattern. This technique produced a cake with tidy, straight sides and less abnormalities.

Gâteau undetectable is typically served with a caramel sauce. For an off-beat riff on salted caramel, I blend white miso into a reduced variation ofStella’s Easy Caramel Sauce In addition to its salt material, miso contributes nutty, fruity, and mouthwatering notes that provide the caramel more depth of taste. That one-two punch of miso both in the cake and the sauce yields a deeply rewarding dessert that’s terrific served at any temperature level, at any time of day.

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