Sunday, April 14, 2013

sunday sweets: pineapple upside-down cake

Whenever I think of pineapple upside-down cake I see in my mind's eye Betty Draper  (or June Cleaver when I am feeling more of a wholesome mindset) doling out canned pineapple and maraschino cherries while smoking a cigarette.  At least to me it isn't really a very appealing connection, which is probably why I have never made it myself.  But recently Leif came home from his brother's house with a pineapple and over the course of last week I simply kept forgetting to cut it up and devour it as I normally do with fruit.  By the time yesterday rolled around it was starting to look like it was teetering on the edge of freshness so into a cake it went.

The great thing about pineapple upside-down cake is that it is easy to make.  Like, stupidly easy, to make.  You mix some pineapple juice, butter, and brown sugar together.  Pour it into a pie pan and then put some pineapple slices on top.  Then use just mix together a basic cake batter with a little but more pineapple juice, pour it on top and then bake.  It kind of reminds me of this apple cake I made way back when in terms of pure simplicity.

Yep, totally, unscrew-up-able.

Unless you use a spring form pan because that is all you have and the juice, butter and sugar mixture starts to leak out the bottom.  No problem, just stick the pie pan on a cookie sheet and call it a day.  Don't panic when you start to see smoke coming out of the oven.

Stupidly easy, like I said.  Stupidly delicious too.

I used this recipe, from Allrecipes.

3/4 c butter
3/4 c packed brown sugar
3/4 c unsweetened pineapple juice
1 1/2 c flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c white sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 pineapple sliced and cored

1.  Grease 9 inch cake pan and turn on oven to 400 degree F (I think this is 200 degree C?)
2.  Melt butter and add 5 tablespoons butter to the brown sugar and 1/4 cup pineapple juice.
3.  Pour this mixture into the pan and then lay pineapple slices on top.
4.  Stir together flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.
5.  Separate the eggs.  Mix the whites until they are stiffened.
6.  Beat 2 egg yolks.  Whisk in 1/2 cup pineapple juice, vanilla, and the remaining butter.  Add to flour mixture and then fold in egg whites.
7.  Pour batter no top of the pineapple slices.  Bake for about 30 minutes or until done.
8.  After it cools for about ten minutes, cover pan tightly with a plate and invert.


  1. This takes me right back! In fact, as a kid growing up, this was the ONLY cake my mum ever made (cooking wasn't her strong point!) Hers was the typical canned pineapple with the glazed cherries and a basic packet vanilla cake on top. She turned 60 last month, and we made her one just like this for old times' sake.
    Yours looks delish.

  2. Looks lovely and of course leaky pan easy fix ;). I pour 1/4 cup of juice over the top of mine and add whipped cream once it cools. One of my favorite easy bakes.

    Open door, fan smoke away, pour hot water in pan to soak and eat some cake while you wait. Perfect way to spend an afternoon.