Toffee Apple Hazelnut Cake with Smoky Salted Caramel Sauce

Toffee Apple Hazelnut Cake

A light fruity sponge made with wholemeal flour, ground hazelnuts and apples which is drizzled with a delightful smoky salted toffee sauce. Perfect Bonfire Night fare.
Course Afternoon Tea, Dessert
Cuisine British
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8 people
Author Choclette @ Tin and Thyme


Smoky Salted Toffee Sauce

  • 100 g golden caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup
  • 75 unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp smoked sea salt (or just use sea salt)
  • 125 ml double cream


  • 180 g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 100 g light muscovado sugar
  • 100 g golden caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs (duck eggs are particularly good)
  • 175 g golden wholemeal flour (or half wholemeal flour and half white flour)
  • 1 rounded tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 100 g hazelnuts – 75g freshly ground and 25g roasted and roughly chopped
  • 2 cooking apples - peeled, cored and diced to roughly 1 cm sq
  • 100 g buttermilk, sour milk or kefir (you can make your own sour milk by adding 1 tsp vinegar to milk and leaving for a few minutes).
  • 1 Cox’s Orange Pippin or other tart dessert apple – peeled - cored but not peeled, then finely sliced


Smoky Salted Toffee Sauce

  1. Pour the sugar into a medium to large saucepan and place over a medium heat.

  2. Add the golden syrup and leave for a few minutes until the sugar has melted and turned a light brown colour.

  3. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter. Be careful as it might spit.
  4. Return the mixture to the heat and simmer for a minute.

  5. Add the cream and salt, stir and allow to cook for a further minute. Take off the heat and allow to cool.


  1. Cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.
  2. Beat in the eggs one by one, adding a little of the flour in between each one if the mixture curdles.
  3. Sieve in the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Add the ground hazelnuts and stir until just mixed.
  4. Stir in the apple pieces followed by the buttermilk until everything is just mixed.
  5. Spoon into a 23cm round silicon cake mould or lined baking tin.

  6. Arrange the apple slices over the top, then drizzle with 4 tbsp of the toffee sauce.
  7. Bake at 180℃ for 40 minutes or until the cake is well risen and firm to the touch and an inserted skewer comes out more or less clean.
  8. Leave to cool in the mould or tin, then transfer onto a serving plate.

  9. Drizzle with 3-4 tbsp of the toffee sauce, then scatter the roasted hazelnuts over the top.

Recipe Notes

Can also be served warm for dessert with the rest of the toffee sauce if desired.