Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
This Southern staple is the kind of cake that’s always on the table, ready to greet anyone who comes over. Good enough for dessert, it’s also not supersweet, so you could have it for breakfast with coffee or tea, or at any time of day. Made with canned pineapple and maraschino cherries (which can stay in the cupboard for a long time), it’s a delicious and beautiful cake that’s also budget friendly. The caramel topping is simple to put together, and the base is light and moist, but strong enough to hold up that joyful topping. If you don’t want to use buttermilk, you could use an equal amount of the reserved pineapple juice. The end result will be slightly sweeter, but that’s not a bad thing.
- Serves: 8 persons
- ½cup/110 grams packed light or dark brown sugar
- ¼cup/57 grams unsalted butter, melted and still hot
- ½teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
- 1(20-ounce/567-gram) can pineapple slices, drained
- 15to 20 maraschino cherries, stems removed
- 2cups/256 grams cake flour, sifted
- 1teaspoon baking powder
- ½teaspoon baking soda
- 1teaspoon coarse kosher salt
- ½cup/113 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1cup/200 grams granulated sugar
- 2large eggs, at room temperature
- ⅓cup/93 grams plain Greek yogurt, at room temperature
- 1teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½cup/120 milliliters whole milk, at room temperature
Step 1Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Step 2Prepare the topping: In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, butter, vanilla extract and cinnamon (if using). Pour the mixture into an ungreased 9-inch pie dish or round cake pan that’s at least 2 inches deep.
Step 3Using a clean kitchen towel or a paper towel, blot any excess liquid off the fruit. Arrange the pineapple slices to your liking in a single layer on top of the brown sugar-butter mixture, covering the base of the pan, then add the cherries wherever there’s a gap. Place the pan in the refrigerator while you prepare the rest of the cake.
Step 4Prepare the cake: In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
Step 5Using a handheld mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the butter on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and beat on high speed until creamed together, about 1 minute, scraping down the sides and the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.
Step 6On high speed, beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined, then beat in the yogurt and vanilla extract, scraping the bowl as needed.
Step 7Pour the dry cake flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Turn the mixer to low speed and carefully pour in the milk. Beat on low speed just until all the ingredients are combined. Do not overmix. You may need to whisk it all by hand to make sure there are no lumps at the bottom of the bowl. The batter will be slightly thick.
Step 8Remove the pan from the refrigerator. Pour and spread the cake batter evenly over the topping.
Step 9Bake for 40 to 55 minutes. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean. (A couple moist crumbs are OK.)
Step 10Remove cake from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Run a knife along the edge to loosen, then invert the cake onto a plate. (Take care, as the pan may still be hot.) Serve warm or at room temperature.