cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the dish
light brown sugar
cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the dish
teaspoons ground cinnamon
freshly grated nutmeg
Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into a 1/2-inch dice
cups coarsely chopped pecans
Caramel Glaze (optional)
vanilla ice cream (optional)
- Heat oven to 325° F. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high, beat the butter and the granulated and brown sugars until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.
- In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Using a wooden spoon, gradually add the flour mixture to the egg mixture. The batter should be very thick. Stir in the apples, pecans, and vanilla. Scrape the batter into a buttered and floured 9-by-13-inch baking pan.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack. Let cool for at least 10 minutes while you make the Caramel Glaze, if using. With a spatula, loosen the sides of the cake. If you want to remove it from the pan, invert it onto a baking sheet, then invert it again, right-side up, onto a platter. With a toothpick or fork, poke holes all over the surface. Pour on the warm sauce. Serve warm or at room temperature, with ice cream, if desired.