This apple cornmeal upside down cake is very delicious! It is extremely comforting to eat after a nice warming dinner in a chilly night.
This cake recipe is from the book, Bon Appetit by Barbara Fairchild and there is a slightly similar version from Epicurious. The Epicurious one uses boiling water but the Bon Appetit one don't. The recipe that I've baked is the book version and I wonder if there is any difference in the cakes baked with the Epicurious version. To me, everything seems to be so well-balanced in this recipe that I've used. The sweetness of apples is well balanced with the saltiness of the cornmeal cake. As the apples were cooked slightly in a thinner kind of caramel, the sweetness of the apples is not overly powered, being just right to create a perfect balance in taste.
I'm very happy baking this cake along with my baking buddies, Joyce from Kitchen Flavours and Lena from Frozen wings. Besides enjoying a delicious slice of cake, I was enjoying too cutting the apples into the "apple" shapes and eating an extra couple slices of nicely cut caramel apples which were reserved for my "personal consumption".
|Cooking the apple topping|
|Baking the cake|
|Admiring a slice of my cake...Yum!|
|my personal stash - an extra slice of my caramel apples... LOL!|
Here's the recipe from the book, Bon Appetit by Barbara Fairchild
(with my modification in blue)
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup plus 2/3 cup sugar (I used raw caster sugar for extra colour and flavour.)
4 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, cut into eighths, cored
(I used Australian Fuji apples. cut them into thick slices and used a cutter to trim the slices into apple shapes)
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
2 tsp baking soda (replace with baking powder)
1/4 tsp salt
1 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
Preheat oven to 350°F (or 160°C fan forced). Generously spray 9-inch-diameter cake pan with 2-inch-high sides with nonstick spray. Melt 2 tbsp butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1/2 cup sugar and stir until sugar melts and turn golden brown, about 3 min.
Add apples and saute over medium heat until apples are just tender and coated with caramel, shaking pan occasionally, about 12 min. Immediately pour mixture into prepared pan; distribute apples and caramel evenly over bottom of pan.
Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking soda (or baking powder) and salt in medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat remaining 6 tbsp butter and 2/3 cup sugar in a large bowl until fluffy.
Beat in egg. Add half of flour mixture; stir in buttermilk. Add remaining flour mixture and mix well. Drop batter by spoonful evenly over apples and spread gently with offset spatula.
Bake until cake is golden brown and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40 min. Cool cake in pan on rack for 5 min. Cut around pan sides to loosen cake. Place platter over pan. Using oven mitts or pot holders as aid, firmly grasp pan and platter together and turn over. Gently life pan off cake. Serve warm.
Note: Using half of the recipe, I've baked this cake in a 12 cm round cake pan at 160°C fan forced for 40 min.
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