I wait all year for ripe apricots. The best apricots should have a lingering and intoxicating aroma of floral honey. They should taste both tart and sweet. This rustic apricot and thyme cake is a wonderful way to finish off those apricots that are just a bit too ripe or too tart. This cake is light, tender, tart, jammy, intricate from the thyme, and every bit delectable.
Apricot & Thyme Cake
¼ cup (113g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup (90g) all-purpose flour
¾ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp kosher salt
1 cup (213g) light-brown sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 heaping tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
8-12 small ripe apricots, pitted and cut in halves
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
Vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream, for serving (optional)
9-inch round tart pan or springform cake pan with a removable bottom
Whisk, stand mixer, or electric mixer
Two medium bowls
One baking sheet or tray
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the tart or cake pan with a bit of the butter or cooking oil spray.
In a bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and kosher salt.
In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Add in the vanilla extract and thyme leaves. Gently stir in the flour mixture until just combined.
Spread the batter in the baking pan, and arrange the apricot halves on top in any pattern you'd like. Place the cake pan on a baking sheet, and put in the oven. Bake for about 25 minutes, until the top of the cake looks firm, and is just beginning to turn golden brown.
Remove the tray with the cake from the oven, and sprinkle the top of the cake with 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar. Return to the oven, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the cake is golden brown all over.
Remove cake from oven, and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Remove the cake from the sides of the spring-form pan or tart pan. Serve the cake with fresh whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
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