Caramel Apple Poke Cake
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 8x4-inch or 9x5-inch loaf pans.Advertisement
In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a large bowl beat butter with a mixer on medium 30 seconds. Gradually add sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, beating until combined. Scrape bowl; beat 2 minutes more. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each. Beat in 1 tsp. vanilla. Add flour mixture and apple butter alternately, beating on low after each addition until well combined. Fold in apples. Divide batter evenly between pans; smooth tops.
Bake about 40 minutes or until tops are golden and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool cakes in pans on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans. Place top sides up on wire racks. Using the handle of a wooden spoon, poke 1/4-to1/2-inch holes three-fourths of the way through cakes about 1 1/2 to 2 inches apart.
Meanwhile, in a bowl gradually whisk milk into dulce de leche until smooth. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the dulce de leche mixture for the whipped cream topper, and set aside an additional 1/2 cup.
Slowly spread remaining 3/4 cup dulce de leche mixture over cakes, allowing mixture to seep into holes. Let cool completely. Meanwhile, in a chilled large bowl beat heavy cream, the 2 tablespoons reserved dulce de leche mixture, and 1 teaspoon vanilla on medium until stiff peaks form (tips stand straight). Before serving, top cakes with whipped cream and drizzle with reserved 1/2 cup dulce de leche mixture. Serves 16.
For a fluffy crumb, avoid apple butter with added pectin. We tested this recipe with 1/2 cup of our Apple-Pear Butter and had good results.