Remember when we were children and our mothers' made pineapple upside-down cake? It was so fun and different and delicious! Since then, bakers have developed endless options for upside-down cakes. One of my favorites is banana upside-down cake. With this recipe, I encourage you to make your own cake with the fruit of your choice. I made this cake for dessert last night for a little dinner party of four people. Less than one day later, this is all of the cake that remains:
CRANBERRY-PECAN UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE. Serves 8.
* 1 cup packed brown sugar
* 1/2 cup unsalted butter
* 2 tablespoons lemon juice
* 1-1/2 cups cranberries
* 1-1/2 cups whole pecans, toasted
* 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
* 1 cup sugar
* 2 eggs
* 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
* 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 cup sour cream
Heat oven to 350º. Line bottom of 9x2" round pan with parchment paper. In small saucepan, heat brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter and lemon juice over medium heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture is smooth and bubbly, stirring frequently. Pour into pan; sprinkle with cranberries and pecans.
In large bowl, beat 1/2 cup butter and sugar at medium speed 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in orange peel and vanilla.
In medium bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt). At low speed, beat flour mixture into butter mixture in three parts alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Carefully spread batter over cranberries and pecans.
Bake 45 minutes or until cake is rich golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack 15 minutes. Run small knife around edge of cake. Place serving plate over cake; invert cake onto plate.
1. Using a stand-mixer is much easier than a hand-mixer.
2. To toast the pecans, place on a baking sheet and bake in 350º oven, stirring regularly until slightly darker in color.
3. If you are using frozen cranberries, allow to thaw before using.
4. Serve with whipped cream.
5. The source of this recipe is "Cooking Pleasures," a magazine published by the Cooking Club of America. To learn more about this club go to www.cookingclub.com.