Apple Buckwheat Cake

Truly an unusual apple cake made with three kinds of flour and cornmeal. But my favorite ingredient is the use of buckwheat flour...as this is September and it reminds me of my grandfather's buckwheat pancakes, made every morning in the fall at his cabin in Michigan. He had been making them for years using his old starter dough...they were divine. When he got on in years, my mother came to the rescue with a recipe not using yeast but as close to the original as I've ever tasted. My sister still makes them. Recipe is HERE.

Back to the apple cake: need I say it was a delicious cake? I'd definitely make it again. What else would you expect from Zoe Nathan? 

Note: It turned out I didn't use nearly enough thinly sliced apples, so when and if you make this cake, overlap 
them so there's not a speck of batter in sight. 

Apple and Buckwheat Cake
From Huckleberry by Zoe Nathan

Ingredients for the cake:
1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
1 2/3 cup sugar plus 2 tablespoons
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon vanilla
6 eggs
4 apples, peeled and cored, one of them grated, the others sliced in 1/8 thick slices
(save cores)
1 1/2 cups almond flour
3/4 cup buckwheat flour
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder

Ingredients for the glaze:
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean, scraped
apple cores reserved from cake

Preheat oven to 350. Line the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan and spray with Pam. Or grease and line a 10 inch cake pan.
Grate one of the apples, set aside. Peel the other 3 apples, set aside to cut later.
In a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light. add vanilla and the eggs, one at a time, scraping and beating in between. Add the grated apple.
At this point, I did the rest by hand. Add the flours and cornmeal along with the baking powder and mix until incorporated. Do not overmix.
Pour into the pan and smooth the top. Slice the apples and fan them out over the top. I didn't use nearly enough, so overlap them more than I did.
Bake for one hour and 15 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, make the glaze. Mix the  sugar, water, salt, vanilla seeds and apple cores in a saucepan. Boil until the sugar is dissolved. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes, strain and then set aside.

After the cake has cooled 15 minutes, remove cake from pan and spoon the glaze on top and sides.

Cake best served same day, but will keep, tightly wrapped, for two days.


  1. I wish I could grab that slice of cake for my breakfast this morning. It would be perfect. Love the combinations of flours and cornmeal. It must taste delicious.

  2. It looks delicious! I love buckwheat flour.



  3. I love buckwheat pancakes and just read your recipe for them. This cake looks delicious. One of my favorite cakes in northern German was a buckwheat cake in layers with lingonberry jam between.

    1. That cake sounds marvelous, Susan.

  4. The perfect breakfast cake!!


  5. I love buckwheat flour - am definitely bookmarking this one.

  6. This sure would go great with my coffee! Thank you for sharing !

  7. I am too a fan of buckwheat flour. This applecake looks wholesome!

  8. I'm starting to think Zoe Nathan can do no wrong! And, I just got more apples in our CSA box today. Just in time for this!

  9. I love buckwheat anything. I just added buckwheat-brown butter madeleines to my must make list and now this -- thanks for the awesome recipe!

  10. now THAT'S a cake! dense and hearty and perfect for fall. nice to see the buckwheat flour again. :)

  11. This looks wonderful and how did you know I've been looking for a good buckwheat pancake recipe?

  12. Buckwheat flavor is the best, I love pancakes with this flour, I bet this is delicious!

  13. I am definitely getting in the mood for apple cakes! This one sounds wonderful, Barbara, and thanks so much for the tip on the apples.

  14. Oh I know I would love this Barbara. Still have lots of buckwheat flour.



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