Hollow Dawn Recipe: Borgias Kitchen Spiced Harvest Cake

Updated: May 5, 2020

There are many bits of wisdom one learns while working within a Borgias kitchen: how best to mix your herbs into a meal so as to not accidentally poison guests, that almonds hide the taste of cyanide, and that a nice slice of honey cake with a good after-meal drink can loosen even the tightest lips. This recipe, of course, follows the latter bit of learning, and can be found often at the end of dinner party meals or within a cake glass in our lounges, waiting to tempt yet another customer.

The ingredients are as follows:

  • 1 cup of sugar

  • 1 cup of honey

  • 1/2 cup of butter, softened for ease of mixing

  • 4 (chicken) eggs

  • 2 or 3 apples, peeled, cored, and diced (I tend toward sweeter, but you can choose any)

  • 1 cup of milk

  • 2 1/2 cups of flour, plus a little extra separate for apple dusting

  • 3 tsp of baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda

  • 1/2 tsp of salt

  • 1 1/2 to 2 tsp spice

For this final ingredient, I tend to choose a mix of cinnamon and nutmeg, perhaps clove. If you decide to make this within your own kitchen, you may use spices that suit your taste, so long as they compliment a dessert palate.

To prepare your cake, first ensure your oven-fire is hot enough for baking - if you have means of telling temperature, try to achieve 350 degrees. And while you are prepping, select your favorite cake mold and grease it, so the cake slides freely from it once sufficiently baked.

Place two bowls - one for your dry ingredients, and one for the wet - on your workspace, and within one combine the flour, baking powder and soda, salt, and spice. Within the other, mix your butter and sugar until well and smoothly combined, then add the honey and eggs.

At this point, you should begin uniting the two: add your flour mixture and the cup of milk to your wet ingredients, alternating between the two with each mix (for those that struggle, it should be flour, then mix, milk, then mix, flour again, then mix, and so on until all ingredients have been combined).

Within the now-empty flour bowl, let your diced apples meet a dusting of flour. Make sure they are coated before you add your apples to the cake batter; this prevents them from sinking to the bottom of your mold and creating an unsightly lack of apple within the majority of your cake.

Once all of your ingredients are combined, tip it into your cake mold, and place within the oven for 40 to 50 minutes; if you feel the need to check for a sufficient bake, use a wooden skewer or such to poke the densest part of the cake. If the skewer returns to you wet, the cake needs more time; dry, and it is done. Once it is out of the oven, let it cool slightly before turning it out of the mold to cool fully, then serve.

I have seen this cake served many ways, and don't believe there is one correct way of doing such, but a bit of brandy cream or with tea or port would be my suggestion. At any rate, you now possess the knowledge to woo your guests with sugar; use this new-found power wisely.

- Everta, Head of the Borgias kitchens (here and everywhere)

Recipe provided by Regan Emma Harris

Cover Photo by Aphiwat chuangchoem from Pexels

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