Tuesday 7 August 2012

Apple-Cornmeal Upside-Down Cake

 had my initial reservations about this Bon Appetite recipe as I thought cornmeal is more suited for savoury bakes rather than sweet ones.  I did not think this was going to taste good, but I was so wrong. This is by far, one of the most moist and delicious cakes I have made.  The best part are  the beautifully caramelised apples on top (or the bottom if you look at it from a different perspective) of the cake.

The apples set at bottom of the pan browned beautifully giving the top of the cake a lovely golden tone.

I love the way these caramelised apples look right after they came out of the frying pan – they remind me of golden roasted potatoes. I made half the recipe in a 6 inch tin and immediately wished I made the full recipe after I took my first bite.
 The cake is totally divine served warm with ice cream – a slice of heaven on earth.
Apple-Cornmeal Upside-Down Cake (9 inch)
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plus 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 pounds Braeburn or Golden Delicious apples (about 4 medium), peeled, quartered, cored, each quarter cut into 2 wedges
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • Vanilla ice cream
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C) . Generously butter 9-inch-diameter cake pan with 1 1/2-inch-high sides; line pan with 10-inch-diameter parchment paper round (parchment will come 1/2 inch up sides of pan). Butter parchment. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in 10-inch-diameter nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 1/2 cup sugar and cook until sugar dissolves and mixture turns deep golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 6 minutes. Add apple wedges and gently shake skillet to distribute caramel evenly. Cover and cook until apples release their juices, about 5 minutes. Uncover and cook until apples are tender and caramel thickens and coats apples, stirring occasionally, about 13 minutes. Transfer apples and caramel syrup to prepared cake pan, spreading evenly.
  • Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in small bowl to blend. Place cornmeal in large bowl; pour 1/2 cup boiling water over and stir to blend. Add 6 tablespoons butter and 3/4 cup sugar to cornmeal mixture. Using electric mixer, beat until well blended. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Beat in flour mixture alternately with milk in 2 additions each. Pour batter over apples in pan.
  • Bake cake until golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Cool cake in pan 5 minutes. Run small knife between cake and pan sides to loosen cake. Carefully invert cake onto ovenproof or microwavable platter and peel off parchment. Cool 15 minutes.
DO AHEAD: Cake can be made up to 6 hours ahead. Rewarm in 350°F oven about 10 minutes or microwave on medium just until slightly warm, about 2 minutes.

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