Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and prep cake pans with butter and flour. For this cake, I used three 6″ pans.
Sift together dry ingredients, excluding the sugars. Be sure not to over pack the flour, as this will result in a drier cake.
In a separate bowl, mix together sugars and oil. Incorporate the eggs, and vanilla. Mix to dissolve the sugar, as well as any lumps of brown sugar.
Add sour cream to wet ingredients, and mix until fully combined.
In small batches, mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, until fully combined. Batter will be thicker than normal cake batter.
Fold diced apples into the batter.
Distribute between cake pans, and spread batter out in the pan, if necessary.
Bake for approximately 20-24 minutes, or until center is set. Use the toothpick test, by inserting it into the center of the cake. If it comes out clean, your cake is done!
Put cakes on cooling racks, and let sit for just a minute before removing them from the pan. Once you see the sides start to pull away slightly, remove the cake from the pan, and let cool on the rack. Do not let them sit in the pan too long, as the residual heat will keep cooking the cake.
Goat Cheese Frosting
Beat together goat cheese and butter until fully combined, and smooth.
Beat in vanilla and sour cream.
In small batches, about a half cup at a time, incorporate the sugar by beating on low. Add more or less according to personal taste.
Let frosting cool slightly, about 10 minutes, in the fridge before frosting the cake. It will be too soft at room temperature to frost properly.
Whiskey Caramel Drizzle
Add sugar and whiskey to a medium sauce pot, and place over medium heat. Sugar will dissolve on it’s own to create a syrup.
Let cook, untouched. Do not stir, as this can cause crystals along the sides of the pot. Tilt pot from side to side to mix.
Once the sugar reaches a medium to medium-dark amber color, remove from heat, and slowly add in the cream. The sugar will bubble up and steam, which is why you want the bigger pot.
Once cream is incorporated, add in butter, in chunks, and mix until smooth.
Pour caramel into a heatproof container, to stop the cooking process, and let cool and thicken.
Once cakes are cool, use a bread/serrated knife to trim off tops, to flatten if necessary.
Put the first cake layer on the cake plate, cut side up, and top with about a half cup of frosting. Spread almost to edges. The weight of the cake will help it spread to the edges.
Tip: Add a small dollop of frosting to the center of your cake plate before putting on the first layer, to help keep it from sliding later.
Repeat with next layer, cut side up, if using three cake layers.
Top with the last cake, cut side down. Spread frosting along the sides of the cake, working into any gaps, just enough for a rustic finish, allowing the cake itself to peek through.
Spread remaining frosting evenly on the top of the cake.
Once the caramel has thickened to a consistency a little thicker than honey, spoon along the top edge, so that it drips down the side of the cake. Spoon additional caramel over the top, center, of the cake, in a thin, even layer.
Tip: Do not drown your cake in the caramel. You will have some left over, which can be refrigerated, and used as ice cream topping, or in coffee.
Cut, serve, and enjoy! Any leftover cake should be stored in the refrigerator.