Classic pineapple upside-down cake is baked with the pineapple on the bottom and inverted so the pineapple becomes the top. This version uses fresh pineapple, but you can substitute canned. It's so unusual that serving it makes for a memorable occasion. Pineapple upside-down cake is especially good for summertime parties, with its fresh fruit flavor.
This recipe is courtesy of Gourmet magazine.
- 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter (melted)
- 2/3 cup light brown sugar (firmly packed)
- 3 cups fresh pineapple, cut into 1-inch chunks (about 1 pineapple)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (double-acting)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter (softened)
- 2/3 cup sugar (granulated)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup milk
- Garnish: whipped cream or vanilla ice cream
Make the Topping
- In a small bowl, stir together the butter and the brown sugar until it's well-mixed and spread the mixture evenly in a well-buttered 9- by 2-inch round cake pan.
- Pat the pineapple dry between several thicknesses of paper towels and arrange it evenly on the sugar mixture.
Make the Cake
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Sift together into a bowl the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
- Place the butter and sugar in another bowl and cream with an electric mixer until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, and beat in the vanilla.
- Add the flour mixture alternately in batches with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and beating well after each addition.
- Pour the batter into the pan, spreading it evenly, and bake the cake in the middle of the oven for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack for 15 minutes, then run a thin knife around the edge and invert the cake onto a plate.
- Serve the cake warm or at room temperature with the whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
- Emphasize the tropical flavor of pineapple upside-down cake by adding maraschino cherries to the topping. Arrange them along with the pineapple on top of the topping sugar mixture, alternating each one.
- Substitute rings for chunks for a pretty presentation. Cut fresh pineapple into rings or use canned pineapple rings.
- Use a Bundt cake pan for a more spectacular presentation. Use fresh or canned pineapple rings with this pan. Cut the rings in half and stand them vertically against the sides of the pan for an interesting look.
- Use crushed pineapple instead of chunks for a more all-over effect.