Saturday, February 22, 2014

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Growing up in Indonesia didn't give me a chance to eat most old-fashioned American cakes, so whenever I have time I'm almost always drawn to make these type of cakes.  Today's baking adventure is this pineapple upside-down cake.  I didn't know before I moved here that one can make cake with fruits on the bottom, turn it upside down after it's baked, and have a delicious warm cake for dessert.  I'm more accustomed to traditional Indonesian sweets or Dutch-style cakes.  Of course, once I'm settled here, I've made various type of American-style cakes in no time, including the upside-down cake.

What I look for is the moist cake part, slightly gooey fruit part, but not overly sweet taste.  Fruits that are used can vary depending on what is available or in season.  My family loves anything with pineapple so they'll devour this cake easily.  I've made a fresh peach upside-down cake in some summers ago and it's equally terrific.

I've made some modifications from the original recipe and I hope you'll enjoy this as well.

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Serves 8 to 10

For the cake

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup milk

For the topping

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

6 thin rounds cored pineapple, cut into halves

Make the cake:  Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease a 9-inch round cake pan.  In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt.

With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.  Add eggs and vanilla; beat until combined.  Add flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of milk.  Mix just until combined.

Make the topping:  Melt butter in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Add brown sugar at once and stir until sugar melts.  Remove from heat and pour into the prepared pan.  Arrange pineapple slices in concentric form, overlapping slightly if necessary to fit.

Carefully spoon batter over pineapples in pan.  Bake until a cake tester comes out clean, about 35 minutes.  Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes.  Run a knife around edge of cake to loosen, then carefully invert onto a plate.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Source:  adapted from Martha Stewart's Cakes