Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Cake of the Week: Cranberry Upside Down Cake

I’m on my way home!!! I have spent Thanksgiving many places –- at the homes of friends and families of friends -- in Boston, Virginia, and Niger. But this year I’m going home to California for the big Thanksgiving celebration for the first time since high school. And I am SO EXCITED. 

I love going home. It always involves excessive family time: shopping with my sisters, running with my dad, fighting over the cross-word with my mama (dibs for this week!). Plus, of course, some good quality Petaluma-style chilling: meandering downtown, taking our dog (Amy) for walks, losing myself in a book on my parents’ bed. All things good.

And this year, for the first time ever, my entire family will be together. That’s my immediate family, plus my cousins’ family, grandma, and aunt (all of whom we usually spend holidays with), PLUS  LLC’s family! YAY! My aunt will host the feast, so I don’t think I’m making anything for the big day.

(You may remember that I already put in my fair share of Thanksgiving cooking time.)

As you make your last-minute Thanksgiving plans, consider adding this super simple and insanely good Cranberry Upside Down Cake to your menu.

I made it for my feast, and no joke, one of the guests ate 4 pieces! He said it was the best cake he’s  ever had. I love when I get that kind of reaction...And this cake really was delish, I wish I’d made two!

Cranberry Upside-Down Cake (from Brown Eyed Baker)
Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Bake Time: 30 minutes
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
  • 1 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1¾ cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.

2. Rub the bottom and sides of an 8-inch cake pan with 2 tablespoons of the unsalted butter (it will be a really thick layer of butter). In a small bowl, stir together ½ cup of the granulated sugar with the cinnamon and allspice. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the bottom of the pan. Arrange the cranberries in a single layer on top of the sugar mixture.

3. Using an electric mixer, cream together the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter and ½ cup of granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk, until well combined.

4. Spoon the batter over the cranberries in the pan, and smooth the top. Bake until a thin knife inserted in the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. 

5. Let cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the cake; invert onto a rimmed platter. Store any leftovers at room temperature.