Friday, September 21, 2012

Cinnamon Apple Walnut Torte

I have never been good in this field that is, looking for a good tutor for my kids. Actually I am not even sure how you classified good tutors?
Grade producer or motivation encourager?
For my son's primary education, I went through two Chinese tutors for him before I decided to give up Chinese. Both just couldn't handle my son and both walked out on us on the eve of a test.
Then came Prelim and I was worried when I saw the result. Got another that charged me S$100 per hour and while he was here, he will be texting away or having toilet break (big business) while my son is doing assessment. I tolerated for a few lesson and in the end I told him that I am expecting him to help my son to attain As.  I fired him after when he said it takes two hands to clap?  If you didn't even put in effort to see whether you can motivate my son further how do you know that my child will not respond?
Then I had another that is constantly on medical leave. So in the end, I should say that my son's PSLE result was 100% son's effort. He could have done better as all the teachers' expected but we have no complains about his aggregate. He did get into the school of our choice.
5 years down the road, for my little one, we had no choice as she was falling behind all her peers and her started feeling insecure.   I even got the school special need teacher to examine her but the result was negative. Some how some where, she just couldn't comprehend the syllabus being taught in school.
I blame the inefficient teachers thus I had to outsource as the syllabus is way past what I know during son's time. It is not that I cannot derive the answers but the method in approaching how it is being solved is different.
Anyway, I am glad that I found a Chinese tutor that can motivate my girl and now she is enjoying this subject that was her weakest.
Her English also seems to be slight improvement but unfortunately the class size is so big that the tutor has problem focusing on individual. So I am really not too sure whether I need to seek out another.
As for her Math and Science tutor, this one is totally out. If you are telling me that my girl lacks the foundation or basic, then why are you still pushing her to do past year papers and not helping her to comprehend those topics that you said she lacks?
Now I am on the path once again, seeking help from experienced mom that knows actually what is good and bad tutors.
Let's hope the Ministry will do something about tutors who obviously are out to earn big money and trying to help a child to gain knowledge.
Enough of this housewife's ranting, see what I baked today .... a Cinnamon Apple Walnut Torte. A mouthful isn't it?
Initially I had no plan to join this round of Aspiring Baker as I was busy with my project.

Let's have some story time. I bought 5 Granny Smith apples with the intension of making apple pie. The day I wanted to bake it, I found only two remaining so there goes my plan.
I know my girl and I don't like green apples unless they are cooked, hubby is not a big fan of green apple and son is way too lazy to dig into the fruit compartment. Now you tell me where is the missing link? Well, she denied so what can I do with two apples left but to make Cinnamon Apple Walnut Torte.  If not, it will go into the bin again (as I said before, for these past few months, I have been throwing food away way too often)

I saw THB is hosting this recipe from Coffee Cakes by Lou Seibert Pappas, and it fitted perfectly to my two green apples!  yea no wastage!

I have eaten chocolate torte but not one with fruit base. It tasted like a pudding without sauce.  Thus I made some caramel sauce and as girl requested for vanilla ice cream last week, I had some still in the freezer.
So this is how I pair it off.

Will I make this again? ehhh... I doubt so.

I'm submitting this post to :
Aspiring Bakers #23: Desserts On A Plate (September 2012)

What you need:

2 eggs
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
36g cake flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
120g roughly chopped walnuts
2 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1  tbsp caster sugar


Preheat the oven to 170 deg.  Greased and lined baking pan.

Beat eggs until frothy and beat in brown sugar and vanilla until light.

In another bowl, stir the flour, salt and 1/2 tsp cinnamon to blend. Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture.

Reserve a handful of walnuts for the topping. Mix the remaining nuts, apples and cranberries into the batter, spread into the prepared pan.

Bake for 25 mins or until the cake is set and golden brown. Let cool slightly and serve warm.

Caramel Sauce

Heat pan and add in 4 tbsp sugar.  Melt till it become golden. 

Add in a tbsp of butter and stir till it melts.

Vanilla Ice Cream (Adapted from The Perfect Scoop )

Vanilla Ice Cream

1 cup milk
A pinch of  salt
150g sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 cups heavy cream
5 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Heat the milk, salt, and sugar in a saucepan. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the milk with a paring knife, then add the bean pod to the milk. Cover, remove from heat, and infuse for one hour.

Set a strainer over the top of the smaller bowl and pour the cream into the bowl.

In a separate bowl, stir together the egg yolks. Rewarm the milk then gradually pour some of the milk into the yolks, whisking constantly as you pour. Scrape the warmed yolks and milk back into the saucepan.

Cook over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom with a heat-resistant spatula, until the custard thickens enough to coat the spatula.

Strain the custard into the heavy cream. Stir over the ice until cool, add the vanilla extract, then refrigerate to chill thoroughly. Preferably overnight.

Remove the vanilla bean and freeze the custard in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

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  1. Awww Edith, I hope you manage to solve the tutor problem. It is tough, that's for sure. Your torte looks delicious even if you didn't think it tasted it.

    1. Yah I seriously hope so coz it is so near to girl's exam. haiz.

  2. i'm going to bake this tomorrow, Edith
    i guess i have to prepare sauce to go with this dessert, too :)

    1. Alice, I felt this torte tasted better with another compliment like ice cream.

  3. It is quite hard to find a tutor that isn't just in it for the money. They need to be genuinely interested in helping your child and improving their results...I hope you manage to find one that is capable and trustworthy! Have a great weekend!

    1. I finally found a Math tutor who seems to be THE ONE. Let's pray that it will work out and let my gal gained some confidence in this subject.

  4. Thank God my ordeal is over! My son is in his 1st Poly year; we were all delighted that he got into his top choice. No more tuition. Lol! I sympathise with u. Hope everything gets better for u.

    Love everything about this dessert, except that I'll do away with the cinnamon.... it's too strong for me. I like the pairing with ice-cream as well.

    I'll be throwing another Giveaway very soon, this time just for S'poreans for watch out for it!

    1. Shirley no kidding, your son is already a big boy! Wow you looks really well maintained.

    2. Hahaha! Thks, dear! Children grow so fast!

  5. wow, i'm kinda glad i dont have kids to worry about tutor problems :x Hope u find a good tutor! Thanks for submitting to this month's AB. :)

  6. hi edith, tutors must treat all their students like their own kids then i think their dedication will be there. Not just i teach , you listen..i think communication both ways are just as equally important..i think a good tutor will know what approach to take to help the kid. I quite like this apple dessert, i couldnt agree more that it's is more delicious to be eaten with ice cream!

  7. Poor Edith, sounds like you have been going through such a hard time these days. Your boy, your maid & your computer!!! Just take it easy & stopped pulling your own hair. You will get old very fast. haha.... Oh, I'm not blaughing. There always a way to sort things out, so no need to put yourself in such headache situation. You'll find a better way when your mind is calm & clear. Take a break take a KIT :o) Probably, ice cream will help as well.


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