Long winter holiday weekends make me crave sweet, salty, creamy, crunchy things. Not necessarily in the same dish.

Basically, winter just makes me want to eat. It helps offset the bone-chilling winds and below freezing temperatures.

After a hectic past few weeks, I decided to spend the weekend eating out – part of self-care involves letting other people taking care of you at times, or spending some money to make life easier, so I embraced the combination of the two. But that didn’t stop me from reminiscing about yummy things I’ve made in the past.

Like this Cinnamon Apple Cake. I made it back in November when local apples were still plentifully in season.

It starts with flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda. Some recipes will call for you to sift these ingredients to avoid any lumps. I just whisk them together, and all is still right with the world. Or at least in the bowl.

Cinnamon and cardamom join the party.

In a separate bowl, sugar and softened butter are wed in culinary bliss…

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…and are creamed together until they are pale yellow.

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Eggs are thrown into the mix. My eggs had shells that were a beautiful pastel green color…isn’t that cool?

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Rich, tangy buttermilk rounds out the lineup…

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…along with a couple of teaspoons of vanilla extract. I always add a few extra splashes of vanilla. It’s my happy flavoring.

But you can probably tell that from the drippy stains on the bottle.

At this point, I suppose I warn you about the perils of eating raw batter and to discourage you from licking the spoon, since there are raw eggs in there and all.

But…do I as I say, not as I do. I can’t help myself. This was too perfect not to swipe.

The batter gets transferred to a greased baking dish. Or cake pan. Whatever you’ve got.

Ah, apples. They just make me happy. I have a deep affection for Gala apples, so tasty raw or cooked, and Honeycrisp, which are the juiciest variety I’ve ever eaten. But you can use whichever kind makes you happy.

The apples are sliced…

…and neatly arranged on top of the batter. Or as neatly possible. I’m still working on my perfection skills.

The aromatic combination of cinnamon and sugar dust the apples, the crowning glory on this cake.

For the next 45 minutes or so (depending on the size of your dish/pan) the cake bakes in at 375 degree oven, and it acts as the best room perfume ever. Kitchen, you smell so good.

The cake tastes pretty good too.

Light and moist with tender crumbs, its warmth will hold me over until spring comes. I cannot wait to make it again.

For the full recipe, visit joythebaker.com.

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