I think I may have mentioned this before…I had lately been on a sabbatical from doing my favorite thing in the world- baking cakes!
Having a food blog is great but eating all that food by yourself, is not!! I love, love looove baking, but eating all those cakes most definitely does me no favors. Hubby and I tried making a pact that if I have to make rich foods for my blog, we will decide upon a fixed quantity to eat each day, (say, a slice of cake or half of a cup-cake only) and that will keep our calory intake in check. It was the perfect plan but……you know that feeling when you are alone in the house, hubby is away at work and you can actually hear the cake in the refrigerator calling out to you, saying, “EAT ME! EAT ME! EAT ME!” Then you have one slice…and then another…and another one with your evening tea………….. Sigh!
So that plan didn’t work out.Long story short, we had vowed off cakes for some time.
After months of putting my baking gloves away, I was itching to make a cake again. Pineapple upside-down was a cake that was on my list from a long time and when I finally decided that it’s time to end my sabbatical, this was obviously my first choice.
This cake is gorgeous, delectable and insanely flavorful. Just the first sight of it will make your family and friends go ‘ooooooh!!!‘ at your next dinner party. The caramel gives it a rich and succulent top layer and even though it may look intimidating on the first glance, there’s nothing much to it really!
So, give this sinful recipe a go and enjoy!!
For the Caramel-
– 1/2 cup of brown demerara sugar
– 4 tbsn of butter, softened to room temperature
For the cake-
– 1 cup flour
– 1 cup butter (room temperature)
– 3/4th cup sugar (1/2 cup white sugar + 1/4 cup brown demerara sugar)
– 4 eggs
– 1 tin of Pineapple
– 2-3 drops of pineapple essence (optional)
– 2-3 drops vanilla essence
– 3 tbsn of the syrup preserved from the pineapple tin
– 1.5 teaspoon baking powder
– Grease your baking pan with a thin layer of butter all over.
– First, let us make our Caramel!
Place the butter and brown sugar in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Once the mixture has turned into a uniform liquid, you have to stop stirring or mixing. Let it sit on the heat until you see the syrup just about bubbling at the sides. This is the sign of sugar caramelizing. Remove from heat, and pour into your prepared cake pan. When your caramel pours silkily into the cake tin in shiny folds, you would know that you have nailed the caramel. You will be able to smell it too! Smells very toffee-like.
– Spread your caramel evenly in the baking tin while it is hot.
-Arrange the pineapple rings and cherries on top of the warm caramel, in any pattern that you like.This will form the pretty top layer of our cake when its ready. Set aside.
– Now let us prepare the batter for the cake!
– Put your oven to pre-heat at 185 degrees C.
– In a bowl, mix butter and sugar and beat till sugar dissolves and butter looks white and creamy. Use a hand blender if u have one!
– In a separate bowl, beat the eggs very well. Set aside.
– Whisk your dry flour with the baking powder so that it’s mixed well.
– Now mix some of this flour in the butter & sugar mixture- beat well! Then add some beaten egg in the butter & sugar mixture- beat well! Continue this alternate cycle till u run out of flour and eggs.
– After that, add the pineapple extract, vanilla essence and the pineapple syrup to your batter. Fold in everything gently.
Time to assemble the caramel and the batter.
– Pour in the batter slowly and carefully over the caramel and pineapple layer in the baking tin, careful not to move the cherries or pineapple out of the places. Pour evenly so that the whole surface is covered uniformly with the batter. Bake for 30-35 mins at 185 degrees C or till the tooth-pick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Do not open the door to check before 20-25 minutes at all. If the middle still seems soft and uncooked, keep baking till done, checking every 5-6 minutes with the toothpick.
– Let the cake sit in warm oven for 10 mins but with its door open.
– When your cake has cooled down, run a knife around the edge of the pan. Then, keep a plate on top of your tin and invert the cake onto it carefully.
Tadaaaa!! Your gorgeous Pineapple Upside down cake is ready!! Serve with a dollop of whipped cream or simply as it is. Enjoy!
– You can use fresh pineapple for this cake as well, but I find that syrup from the pineapple tin add greatly to the flavor. Also when you buy your tin, make sure that you check that the pineapple in it is cut in rings and not in chunks.
– I always use salted butter in my cakes. If you want, you can use unsalted butter in the cake and add a tsp of salt separately to your batter. No need to add salt to your caramel though.
– Cooking time may vary according to the different oven brands. My cake took 45 minutes in the oven to get done but that may have something to do with the fact that I lowered the temperature to 170 degrees C, when I felt that it had pre-heated to be too hot. After 30 minutes keep checking every once in a while till your cake is baked completely on the inside.
– As the caramel, the cake batter itself and the syrup from the tin, all have sugar in them, you can adjust the quantity of the sugar if you like your cakes to be less sweet!