Danish Apple Cake (Æblekage) is not actually a cake but a traditional Danish dessert comprising layers of stewed apples, caramelised toasted oats, and finished off with whipped cream.
This is my mum’s version and she always tops it with a delicious grating of dark chocolate!
So it’s officially Autumn and my mind automatically turns to apples.
I was recently lucky enough to be given a couple of carrier bags of Bramleys from a neighbour and also managed to forage some dessert apples from a recent trip out kayaking! So what to make?
Well for some time now I have been meaning to make my mother’s Danish Apple Cake (Æblekage) which translated from Danish means Apple Cake.
It’s not really a cake though as there is no baking involved, it’s more like a trifle-type dessert minus the cake and custard!
However, it is often served in the afternoon with coffee and does solidify like a cake when left in the fridge.
My mum has been making Æblekage for as long as I can remember and I think most Danes have their own way of making it.
Some use bread crumbs or even crushed macaroons in the layers but this version uses toasted oats which are coated in butter and sugar.
Many versions also use all dessert apples but there is a nice contrast to be had when using Bramleys too, in both texture and flavour.
The stewed apple doesn’t want to be sweet but the sugar is just there to take away the tartness from the Bramley apples.
The crunchy sweet layer of oats contrasted with the apples and cream make for a delicious dessert and the grated chocolate is just my mum’s indulgent addition.
This recipe makes enough for about 6 – 8 servings as personally I like to have enough dessert for the next day (and it’s so good) but you could always halve the quantity.
Traditionally Danish Apple Cake is served in a crystal bowl but can also be made in individual goblets if you prefer (fab for dinner parties).
This is a very budget-friendly dessert, especially at this time of year when apples are in plentiful supply and there are lots of offers out there!
I don’t think my mum has ever measured anything for her Danish Apple Cake as most of her recipes are done from her head and by eye.
This is therefore my interpretation and after asking my son to compare the 2 versions he said mine was spot on – job done!
I have now made a Cheat’s Danish Apple Cake (Gammeldags Æblekage) served in individual glasses which you should check out if you’re pushed for time!
More Apple Cakes & Desserts
- Quick Apple Puddings
- Apple Meringue
- Lilian’s Apple Cake – Danish
- Apple & Marzipan Dumplings
- Apple & Blueberry Tarte Tatin
- Eve’s Pudding
- Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars
I’m sure you’ll love Danish Apple Cake so do give it a go.
Was thrilled when Felicity Cloake tagged me in her Instagram on 7/08/2023 to say that she’d made this recipe.
Then I was even more thrilled when a friend pointed out that my mum’s recipe had been referenced in Felicity’s article in The Guardian’s Feast Magazine.
Felicity took elements from various Danish food writers’ Danish Apple Cakes, such as Trine Hahnemann and Signe Johansen, and came up with her own version.
Do leave a comment and rating below when you’ve made this recipe as I love getting your feedback! You can also share your pictures by tagging @FabFood4All over on Instagram.
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Danish Apple Cake (Æblekage)
- 500 g Bramley apples (about 3 apples)
- 500 g dessert apples (about 5 apples)
- 3 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla sugar
- 50 g unsalted butter (2 oz)
- 200 g rolled oats (2 cups)
- 125 g granulated sugar (1 cup + 2 tbsp)
- 300 ml whipping cream (1.3 cups)
- 1 tbsp grated plain chocolate
- Fill a large pan with water.
- Peel, core and finely slice apples and drop into water.
- Drain water, leaving 1 tbsp and stew apples with 3 tbsp sugar and vanilla sugar under a lid until tender. (About 10 – 15 minutes).
- Transfer cooked apple slices to a bowl and allow to cool.
- In a large frying pan melt butter over a gentle heat, then add 125g sugar, stirring with a wooden spoon.
- Once sugar has turned into a caramel with butter (this will take a few minutes) stir in the oats until they are golden and toasted. (Be careful not to burn).
- Allow to cool.
- Finally whip cream and place half the apple mixture into a bowl followed by half the toasted oats, then repeat and finish off with a layer of cream and decorate with grated chocolate.
- Serve straight away or chill until needed.