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Apple Puree Recipe – by Sarah Calcutt

It’s apple season! Sarah Calcutt, founding partner of Partners in Produce, Non-Exec Director of New Covent Garden Market, and City Harvest Food Council member, shares some of her favourite seasonal recipes with City Harvest.



  • 1kg cooking apples (bramley are always the best) this recipe needs 550g of puree if you’ve already made some.
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 500ml sunflower oil (plus a little for greasing the pan)
  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g wholemeal flour (or just use 200g plain)
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tsp mixed spice (or one each of cinnamon and ginger)
  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 100g raisins (currents or other dried fruits are also great)
  • 50g walnut pieces (but these can be left out if someone doesn’t like/cannot eat them)


1. Make the puree – peel core and slice the apples and put in a non-stick saucepan, add the lemon juice and 2 tbsp water. Cover and cook on a low heat until they break down into a smooth puree. Uncover, increase the heat a little and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring all the time, to cook off the extra liquid. Set aside to cool.


2. Preheat your oven to 160 C/Gas Mark 3. Grease and baseline a non-stick 20cm springform tin. Mix the flours, bicarb, spices and sugar in a mixing bowl. Add the fruit and nuts, weigh out 550g of apple puree and stir into the dry ingredients with the oil.

3. Spoon the mixture into the tin, level the top and bake in the middle of the oven for 55-60 minutes, use a skewer to test if the middle is cooked. When this comes out clean, take out the cake and cook in the tin for 10 minutes then turn out.

4. You can eat this warm with custard, or cold decorated with a cream cheese frosting.

“This is an invaluable kitchen standard – have warm with honey on porridge, have with cream cheese on a bagel, add raisins and use as a pancake filling, fill a donut with some… the uses are endless, it’s not just a great baby weaning food.”

Sarah Calcutt

CEO, City Harvest

Sarah Calcutt, City Harvest Food Council member, Founding Partner of Partners in Produce, Non-Exec Director New Covent Garden Market and influential ambassador for fresh, British, seasonal produce.

City Harvest Food Council  From restauranteurs to retailers and farmers to financiers, our Food Council works with us to achieve our overall aims – Rescuing Food, People and Planet – through thought leadership, engaging with decision-makers and more. 

About City Harvest

Est. 2014, City Harvest London rescues nutritious surplus food from manufacturers, suppliers, producers and retailers, and delivers, for free, to 375+ London charities feeding those facing food poverty. City Harvest rescues food, people, and planet by preventing food waste, providing life-changing support to communities in every London borough through food, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions from waste.

City Harvest believes in the right to food and is passionate that, in this day and age, every child should have access to fresh nutritious food to thrive and not simply survive. City Harvest is a supporter of the Free School Meals campaign. We want to ensure no child goes hungry and we encourage food partners to use our networks to make a huge difference. By delivering to food banks, community centres and school programmes we try to make sure we help fill the gaps all year round.

City Harvest vans equally deliver to homeless shelters, hostels, soup kitchens, mental health charities, projects supporting the elderly and socially isolated, social pantries, community kitchens, refugee hostels, nurseries, family centres and domestic abuse refuges.

City Harvest tripled in size in 2020 to meet the demand of people facing food poverty. Now distributing free food for more than 1.2 million meals a month the need continues to rise as the cost of living tightens its grip.

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