Here in BC we grow wonderful apples and in the fall they are at their best. A buckle is an easy home-style cake that has been made since pioneer times and uses ingredients found in many kitchens. The fruit you use can vary to use what is in season, so experiment to find your favourite.    

Yield: One 20cm (8″) square cake
Preparation Time: About 25 minutes
Baking Time: About 30 – 35 minutes




Knob of butter, to grease the cake pan


  • 2 medium-sized apples, cored and sliced
  • 1 cup (250mL) all purpose flour
  • ½ cup (125mL) whole wheat pastry flour
  • 2 tsp (10mL) baking powder
  • ¼ tsp (1mL) mace
  • ½ tsp (2mL) salt
  • ¼ cup (50mL) butter, at room temperature
  • ¾ (175mL) cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup (125mL) milk


  • 3 Tbsp (45mL) sugar
  • 1 tsp (10mL) ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp (1mL) ground cloves
  • 2 Tbsp (30mL) butter at room temperature


  • 8 inch square cake pan
  • Melon baller (Parisian scoop)
  • 2 small-sized bowls
  • 2 medium-sized bowls
  • Fork
  • Wooden spoon
  • Liquid measuring cup
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Large-sized bowl
  • Rubber spatula
  • Cooling rack


1. Preheat the oven to 190 C (375 F).

2. Rub a knob of butter over the bottom and sides of the cake pan to grease the pan.


1. Cut the apples in half from stem to sepal. Remove the apple cores with a melon baller. Slice the apples into finger-wide slices. Put aside for now.

2. In a medium-sized bowl, measure the flours, baking powder, mace and salt. Mix together with a fork. Put aside for now.

3. Measure the butter and the sugar and place in a large bowl. Using the back of a wooden spoon, cream until fluffy.

4. Add the egg and beat to mix in.

5. Measure the milk and leave in the liquid measuring cup.

6. Add 1/3 of the milk to the egg mixture and stir to combine with a wooden spoon. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and stir to combine. Add another 1/3 of the milk to the egg mixture and stir, and then another 1/3 of the flour mixture. Add the last 1/3 of the milk and then the last 1/3 of the flour mixture and stir just until the mixture is combined. Don’t over-mix the batter. Only stir until the ingredients are wet.

7. Spread evenly in the prepared cake pan.

8. Place the apple slices in rows on top of the cake batter, pressing into the batter slightly.

9. Measure the sugar, cinnamon and cloves, into a small bowl and combine. Sprinkle over the apples. Dot the topping with little bits of soft butter.

10. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes. You can tell the cake is done when a toothpick poked in the centre of the cake comes out clean, the apples are browned and tender and the cake shrinks slightly from the sides of the pan.

11. Cool on a cooling rack. Cut into squares when cool.


Visit farmer’s markets and try different apples to find your favourite or find your favourite apple at the UBC Apple Festival in October.




Gather ingredients. Butter 8 inch cake pan. Slice apples and put aside.

Mix the flours, baking powder, mace and salt together in a bowl with a fork. Measure butter & sugar in a separate bowl. Cream with a wooden spoon until fluffy.

Beat egg into butter mixture. Measure the milk. Stir 1/3 of milk into egg mixture. Add 1/3 of flour mixture and stir. Repeat until all ingredients are combined. Don’t over-mix – only stir until all ingredients are wet.


Spread evenly into cake pan. Layer apple slices on top, slightly pressing into batter. Mix sugar, cinnamon & cloves and sprinkle over apples. Dot with soft butter. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Utensil should come out clean after poking centre of cake

Cool on a cooling rack and cut into triangles and serve.

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