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Dairy-Free Glaze for Silver Palate Chunky Apple Walnut Cake?

gansu girl Dec 17, 2011 05:25 AM

Hi all - I have a niece who's allergic to dairy, and I'd like to make this cake for her, because it's one of the most delicious I know, and because it's dairy-free . . . except for the glaze, which has butter and heavy cream. Specifically, the glaze calls for:

4 T sweet butter
2T brown sugar
6 T granulated sugar
3 T Calvados or applejack
2 T fresh orange juice
2 T heavy cream

The cake itself is very rich and moist (on account of the whopping 1.5 c. of veg oil and, oh yeah, the apples) . . . so wondering if I could just omit the dairy from glaze and maybe add a little more Calvados/applejack? I haven't worked w/butter substitutes, but wonder if they contain too much water to work well here.



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  1. TrishUntrapped RE: gansu girl Dec 17, 2011 05:34 AM

    I'd skip the glaze and just sprinkle a little cinnamon sugar on top, or a dusting of powdered sugar.

    1. g
      GFHappyPlace RE: gansu girl Jan 20, 2012 06:53 AM

      You’ve probably already made that cake for your niece, but if you ever need a dairy-free glaze in the future, I find that canned, unsweetened coconut milk can be substituted for cream (or half and half), at least in small amounts. I too love that Chunky Apple Walnut Cake from The Silver Palate Cookbook, and I made a gorgeous version recently with this glaze:

      Dairy-Free Apple Cider Glaze
      4 T. margarine
      2 T. brown sugar

      6 T. granulated sugar

      4 T. apple cider

      2 T. fresh orange juice
      2 T. unsweetened, canned coconut milk
      2 tsp. vanilla

      Melt the margarine in small saucepan and stir in both sugars. Add everything else but the vanilla, stir, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat slightly and cook for about 4 minutes, until the glaze begins to thicken. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.

      Pour the warm glaze over the cake. If you’re spooning it over the individual slices, reheat the glaze briefly in the microwave before serving.

      (I’ve also substituted apple cider and vanilla for the Calvados. I’m sure it’s better with the expensive stuff, but this was still delicious!)


      2 Replies
      1. re: GFHappyPlace
        gansu girl RE: GFHappyPlace Jan 20, 2012 12:41 PM

        You know what? I haven't - and your glaze looks perfect. Question - the coconut milk isn't too coconutty? I guess w/only 2T and those other ingredients, it just adds a richness? Thank you so much! She's in boarding school and there are certain nights each month when people can send up desserts - I'm going to get on this!


        1. re: gansu girl
          GFHappyPlace RE: gansu girl Jan 20, 2012 03:14 PM

          Good question. I really didn't notice a coconut taste at all and no one at the party where I served it said anything. The prominent flavors were still apples, cinnamon, and walnuts. I'm guessing you're right that it's too small of an amount to stand out. My only tiny disappointment, and it was truly tiny, was that the original glaze imparts a caramel flavor, and this one made with margarine didn't. But it was still wet, sweet, and delicious. As for your niece, care packages from family are the best! How lucky she is!


      2. m
        magiesmom RE: gansu girl Jan 20, 2012 07:48 AM

        I like a simple citrus juice confectioners sugar glaze.

        4 Replies
        1. re: magiesmom
          GFHappyPlace RE: magiesmom Jan 20, 2012 09:01 AM

          Ooh, that sounds good too. I was thinking of making some blueberry muffins this morning, and that might be the perfect topping. Great suggestion!

          I see I can attach a photo (I'm a newbie at posting on Chowhound), so I'm attaching a picture of the Chunky Apple Walnut Cake with the Apple Cider Glaze.


          1. re: GFHappyPlace
            magiesmom RE: GFHappyPlace Jan 20, 2012 10:20 AM

            it looks delicious.

          2. re: magiesmom
            Jay F RE: magiesmom Jan 20, 2012 01:42 PM

            +1 on citrus juice w/confectioners

            1. re: magiesmom
              will47 RE: magiesmom Jan 20, 2012 01:43 PM

              Nthing that. A simple citrus / confectioners sugar glaze tends to go really well with apple / spice cakes. You can add a little citrus zest too if you like.

              You can also use soy milk as the liquid for a glaze.

            2. Emme RE: gansu girl Jan 20, 2012 10:11 PM

              i'd personally like something a little tangy... i'd use Better than Cream Cheese mixed with a little Earth Balance, powdered sugar, vanilla, lemon juice, and a little unsweetened almond, rice or soy milk to thin it to the consistency you desire :)

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