I don’t bake very often, but sometimes, you just gotta. That was me yesterday.
The backstory: my Aunt-Mom was responsible for the dessert at Christmas dinner this past year and found a terrific recipe on Epicurious for Pineapple Upside-Down Cake. It was originally published in Gourmet magazine in 2000, and her execution of the recipe was flawless.
It got rave reviews from the Grill-Meister:
so moist! so tasty! dense like a pound cake! love the brown sugar caramel-like glaze on top!
In addition to all that food-gushing, I like that the recipe calls for fresh pineapple and forgoes the neon blast of unnatural color and flavor from the maraschino cherries that always came to the upside down pineapple party in the past. I was curious about when that strange addition became the norm for its poor pineapple partner and stumbled on a terrific history lesson about pineapple upside down cakes (see the link in Resources below).
I had an opportunity yesterday to support a friend with a food contribution for a family gathering after a memorial service and thought this cake would be just right. The Grill-Meister agreed, with a caveat: please, please, please make two and keep one at home. (The cake at Christmas was that good, remember: “so moist! so tasty! dense like a pound cake! love the brown sugar caramel-like glaze on top!”)
Along with the Grill-Meister, I can highly recommend this recipe. Aunt-Mom, you done good!
My upside-down cooking experience is shown below, and the recipe from Epicurious is at the bottom of the post.
If you make the recipe, you might want to look at the reviews from other (very enthusiastic) bakers. My recommendations are to bake the cake for a little less time than recommended, use slightly less cardamom, and don’t skimp on the rum drizzle at the end.
The cake travels well and is a good one to bring to parties. Epicurious says it serves 8, but I think it’s about double that number, because the cake is so rich that you can reasonably serve smaller pieces than this shown above.
- History of American Pineapple Upside-Down Cake from Tori Avey
- Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Recipe from Gourmet via Epicurious
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