Monday, 27 August 2012

Fresh Pineapple Upside Down Cake

It's not that all i do is bake cakes. Its just that baking cakes gets me excited enough to come here and leave a record of it. And so a couple of months after my last post i come back here to talk about another new cake i baked and how good it turned out. This was my first attempt at baking the much famed pineapple upside down cake, my first attempt at making caramel and i had absolutely no expectations about this whole attempt resulting in an actual cake. I had lots of hopes of course, but no real expectations. I was prepared for a gooey mess that would fall apart when taken out of the cake mould and was then delighted with the perfect colour and shape of the entity that proudly stood in front of me at the end of 45 minutes in the oven.
My cousin was around to help with the preparation this time, her occassional visits prod me out of my lethargy and get me to trying out new food experiments. And she is nice enough to always praise the outcome, and praise it hightly too. No wonder i get enthused to spend more time in the kitchen when she is around. The husband should take a hint from all this, right? His non-responsiveness/ criticism is only succeeding in keeping me away from the kitchen, and in me cooking the same boring meals day after day.
Fresh pineapple being sliced and cored
I used the recipe from Joy of Baking with a few changes based on what ingredients i had in hand. For the topping i used granulated white sugar instead of light brown, and needed only half a medium pineapple as a result of using a smaller sized pan (an 8 inch pan is the largest i have). And for the cake batter, i reduced the quantity of sugar and baking powder, substituted half the butter with vegetable oil, and substituted vanilla extract with pineapple essence. I also ignored the cream of tartar and used whole eggs instead of separately whipping up the egg whites. Phew! turns out there are quite a few differences, didnt notice them during baking.
Topping layer at the bottom of the cake pan
Ingredients for Topping
4 tablespoons (55 grams) butter (or a tablespoon less next time)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 medium pineapple (peeled, sliced 1/4 inch thick, and cored)
Maraschino cherries or candied cherries (optional)
Ingredients for Cake Batter
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup granulated white sugar (use 1 cup if you like your cake sweet)
1 teaspoon pineapple essence
2 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
Pour the cake batter and smooth it - in and out of the oven in 45 minutes
Topping: Place the butter and sugar in a small saucepan and stir over medium heat until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Continue cooking, without stirring, for a few more minutes or until bubbles just start to appear around the outside edges of the mixture. Then remove from heat, and pour into your prepared cake pan. Evenly arrange the fresh pineapple slices on top of the sugar mixture and garnish with cherries.
Cake Batter: Preheat the oven to 350F. In a large bowl, sift or whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter, vegetable oil and sugar until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and then beat in the pineapple essence. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the flour mixture (in three additions), alternately with the milk (in two additions), ending with the dry ingredients.
Pour the batter into the cake pan, smoothing the top. Bake in preheated oven for 45 - 55 minutes, or until the top of the cake has browned and starts to pull away from the sides of the pan (a toothpick inserted into the cake will come out clean). Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for about 10 minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the pan and then invert the cake onto your serving plate. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Turn the pineapple cake upside down and have a fresh warm slice
La's Notes:
I thought the caramel topping could do with a tablespoon less butter or even half the quantity of butter. The melted butter seemed to form a separate layer over the caramel instead of dissolving into it. But since this is my first attempt at making sugar caramel, i cannot be sure if that is how it is meant to be.
PS: All these pics are from my mobile. Husband had hijacked the good camera for his college friends reunion while i was at home baking this. You know who to blame if these pics look sub-standard. No, not me.


  1. Wonderful cake dear. Looks yum. Maybe you should join some baking groups to continue with your tasty and yummy experiments.

    Now as regards to compliments/ responses from you better half forget it. Even after 24 yrs the only compliment I get is "Thik ahe" and that is an occasional high praise after asking. Do the cooking for your own pleasure. Sorry about the sermon. you are welcome to ignore it if it rankles or delete the message.

    I am hosting WTML All through August’12. Do send me your entries

    1. Thank you Archana..
      And that seems to be universally true about all men. I am yet to see the exception. Guess we have to learn to live with.
      Its always a pleasure to know that you read through the entire post. I am thrilled every single time :)

  2. Wow from the looks itself one can make out how delicious the cake was

  3. The cake looks so gorgeous... Would love a slice

  4. Looks great! I just love pine apple!!

  5. Beautifully done, irresistible cake.

  6. Your cakes make me excited too ;) This looks fantastic, I can't believe I have never made an upside down cake before..

  7. A classic cake - looks perfectly SPLENDID! I do believe one of those slices has my name on it :)

  8. Looks absolutely droolicious! So good to have you back blogging and sharing your lovely stories. My hubby critques all my bakes and sometimes it can get annoying. Wondering if he didn't comment at all, would that be a better deal?

    Hope you are well.

    1. Its an even better deal when he doesnt eat it either ;-)
      I mean when friends ask if a particular dish came out well, you can happily give out your own opinion of it and inform them that the husband just won't eat these things!

  9. I absolutely love pineapple cake. Your creation looks drool worthy.


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