4 tablespoons butter
½ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt (could also use table salt)
2 large baking apples, about ¾ pound total (I used one Granny Smith and one Braeburn), peeled, cored and cut into ½ inch pieces
½ cup butter (1 stick) plus more to butter the skillet
1 1/3 cups brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Few grinds fresh nutmeg
¾ cup butter, softened (1 ½ sticks)
3 cups confectioner’s sugar
7 ounces unwrapped soft caramel candies (we used Werther’s). Do not use jarred caramel sauce, or sugar-free caramels
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
Flaked sea salt, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a medium saute pan over medium heat, melt butter and stir in brown sugar and salt.
Once the sugar is dissolved, add the apples and cook until the apples are just starting to get soft, about 4-5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Butter a 10-inch ovenproof skillet and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and brown sugar for 4-5 minutes on medium high until light and fluffy.
With mixer running on medium, add in one egg at a time, letting each egg mix in before adding the next. Scrape the bowl and mix again.
Add vanilla and mix again.
In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
With the mixer running on low, slowly add in the flour mixture and mix to combine. Scrape and mix just until incorporated.
Remove the bowl and fold in the cooled apple mixture including all of the liquid.
Scrape the batter into the prepared skillet and bake 35-45 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. The original recipe said to bake for 30-35 minutes but mine still had an unset center at 35 minutes so I baked it for ten more minutes. Ovens vary so please make sure you test with the toothpick before removing from the oven. Try to insert the toothpick into cake and not a piece of apple so you get a true test.
Let cool in the pan completely and do not start the frosting until the cake is totally cooled. I made my cake the day prior and refrigerated it overnight.
When ready to frost, place softened butter in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment and cream on medium high for 4-5 minutes until the butter is pale and creamy.
Add one cup of confectioner’s sugar at a time and mix slowly to combine. Repeat for remaining two cups of confectioner’s sugar and beat to a creamy consistency.
This next step can make or break the frosting. Unwrap the 7 ounces of soft chewy caramels and place in a microwave safe bowl that has been first lightly sprayed with kitchen pan spray.
Microwave in 20 second bursts to melt the caramels. Mine took about one-minute total. The caramels should be creamy and slightly hot. They will cool and harden quickly, so do not let them sit before going to next step.
Remove the paddle and scrape in the melted warm/hot caramels.
Quickly reattach the paddle and whisk to combine the hot caramels into the butter and sugar mixture. Don’t try to add the caramels with the mixer running. The stream of hot caramel will just get wound around the top of the paddle and harden.
Once the mixture is smooth and silky, add the cream and vanilla and mix to combine.
Scrape the frosting onto the cooled cake.
At this point, I found the frosting too loose to cut the cake so I refrigerated the frosted cake until the frosting was set, about two hours.
When ready to serve, sprinkle on the flaked sea salt, cut into eight pieces and serve right out of the skillet.
The frosting is extremely sweet and the flaked sea salt offsets the sweetness. The cake is rich and frosting sweet so you could easily get 10 portions from this cake.
Last Step! Please leave a review and rating letting us know how you liked this recipe! This helps our business thrive & continue providing free recipes.