Applesauce Cake with Caramel Glaze

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups brown sugar, packed
1 egg
3 cups AP flour, divided (reserve 1/2 cup for dredging)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups applesauce, unsweetened
2 cups raisins
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
For the glaze
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup evaporated milk

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan.
  2. Cream the butter until smooth. Gradually add the brown sugar, beating until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the egg; beat well.
  4. Sift together 2 1/2 cups of the flour, baking soda, salt, and spices. Add to the creamed mixture in batches alternating with the applesauce. Beat well after each addition.
  5. Dredge the raisins and walnuts in the remaining flour; fold into the batter.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until cake tests done.

Chef: cake is moist with good flavor, good spices throughout cake, topping is soft and sweet even if it looks solid like candy, presentation sloppy (we lost control of the caramel a bit).

Personal/team: the caramel sauce did not behave how we expected, thought it would be more liquidy instead of solidify quickly as it cooled. It would have been better to pour on top of whole cake instead of single serving. Actual cake was flavorful and moist, could have used apple chunks in it to make it more like an "apple cake." Personally, I loved the raisins and nuts as well as all the good flavorings. I could have eaten this with no sauce or perhaps just some caramel drizzled on the plate, so you can chose to add just a little.

Lessons Learned:
Applesauce can add a lot of moisture to a cake and the flavor goes so nice with spice cake.
For this recipe, pour sauce on top of whole cake as soon as it's ready. It will harden quickly as soon as you whip air into it.
It's important to know how food is going to act before serving. Knowing how the caramel sauce would act would have helped determine plating and how far in advance to make the sauce. It should have been right before serving because it hardens so quickly.