Spelt, Apple & Cardamom


Recipe by Chef Amanda DeLaura

Although I grew up in Charlottesville, I now live in Los Angeles. While I love the California sunshine, I still miss seasons and fresh apples. This is my favorite time of year. When the leaves crunch under your feet and you can smell the sweet rotting apples on the floor of the orchard groves. In fact for all of you Virginian readers, this cake reminds me fairly strongly of Carter’s spiced apple donuts. I developed this recipe in the bakery during my former restaurant days and I’ve adapted it to make it a more health-focused and nutrient-dense dessert. You’ll be using organic spelt flour, organic grass-fed butter, and organic coconut sugar. Happy baking and bon appétit!

Makes 1 nine-inch cake (about 8 to 12 servings)



115 g softened organic grass-fed butter (1 stick)

175 g coconut sugar (about 3/4 cup)

2 organic pasture-raised eggs 1 tsp vanilla extract

110 g Greek yogurt, sour cream or labneh (local if possible)

180 g homemade apple sauce (McIntosh or Granny Smith and left quite chunky if possible) 300 g spelt flour (about 2 cups + 6 Tbsp)

5 g baking powder

4 g freshly ground cardamom (1/2 tsp) 2 g baking soda

2 g salt (1/4 tsp)

2 g cinnamon (1/4 tsp)

1 g cloves (1/8 tsp)

1 g ginger (1/8 tsp) 

1 g nutmeg (1/8 tsp)

1 g allspice (1/8 tsp)



50 g coconut sugar (about 1/4 cup)

50 g softened organic grass-fed butter (about 3 1/2 Tbsp) 50 g oats (about 1/3 cup)

2 g cinnamon (1/4 tsp)

1 small apple (McIntosh or Granny Smith), very thinly sliced



  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line and grease a 9” non-stick springform
  2. In a large bowl whisk together 300 g spelt flour, 5 g baking powder, 4 g of cardamom**, 2 g baking soda, salt and cinnamon, 1 g cloves, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice. Set aside.
  3. Separately combine together 110 g Greek yogurt and 180 g applesauce into a medium
  4. To make the streusel, add the 50 g coconut sugar, butter, oats and 2 g cinnamon to a medium-sized Using your hands mix the ingredients together until clumps form. Set aside.
  5. In a stand-up mixer (or hand-held mixer) with the paddle attachment beat together 115 g softened butter and 175 g coconut sugar on medium speed until fluffy and well incorporated, about 2 minutes (the coconut sugar granules are so large that they will never fully dissolve during this process. Don’t assume this step will look like a traditional cake with conventional cane sugar). Add 1 tsp vanilla and 2 eggs and continue to beat on medium speed for about a minute, until well incorporated. Scrape the edges with a rubber spatula and continue to beat for several seconds.
  6. With the mixer on low, add the yogurt/apple mixture, lightly beat and then slowly add the flour/spice mixture to the mixer as it runs on low, mixing until just incorporating, being sure to not over mix the spelt into the batter.
  7. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the batter to the edges using a soft spatula. Layer the thinly sliced apple around the outer 2 inches of the edge of the cake pan (you may not need the entire apple) and sprinkle the streusel in the middle of the cake allowing some of it to fall slightly on the outer edge of sliced apples.
  8. Bake the cake for 17 minutes in the middle of the oven, rotate the cake pan 180º and continue to bake for 17 more minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool for at least 15 minutes before enjoying.

*I often bake using a scale instead of measuring cups. Cups are fine but they just do not do the job as effectively or smoothly. Additionally, scales actually allow less washing so that you don’t have to scrub and rinse your measuring cups. If you do not have a scale already, but you do use my recipes often, please go do yourself a favor and buy one. My favorite is linked here. This scale is durable enough that we “chefs” swear by them in and out of any professional kitchen.

And no, rest assured, I am not receiving any money from Amazon for encouraging you to buy one.

** You can buy and use store-bought cardamom for this recipe but I highly recommend using freshly ground cardamom. Similar to freshly grated nutmeg, it’s just so much better than the stale, already ground nutmeg. The easiest way to grind your own cardamom is to slightly crush whole fresh pods in a mortar and pestle. Once crushed till the shells become loose, remove the shells and keep the seeds in the mortar. Continue to crush the cardamom until very finely

crushed. Use as desired. Additionally, you can also grind the whole cardamom pods in a blender or coffee grinder and then process them through a finely meshed colander. Put a large amount of rice into your blender or coffee grinder and blend till very finely ground, to absorb all of the lingering cardamom flavor. Toss the rice when finished.

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