Monday, November 21, 2011

Cranberry Upside Down Cake

Cranberries are traditionally part of Thanksgiving dinner, but I wanted to come up with a slightly different way to highlight these rubies.  Deciding upon a cranberry upside-down cake, I consulted no fewer than 10 recipes for various upside-down cakes, cranberry and otherwise.  None were quite what I was envisioning, so I got to work on my own recipe.  Maple and orange were invited to the party, and a little semolina flour helped add some depth to the thin layer of cake.

Cranberries swimming in a browned-butter maple caramel

It smelled heavenly while cooking (I mean, it's essentially a browned butter caramel that ends up topping the cake), and it was delicious.   This would be a fantastic addition to your Thanksgiving table, and it might very well end up at mine again!

Cake, pre-bake

The best part about this cake?  It had nothing to do with the creative process of developing the recipe, my healthy modifications, or even how it tasted.  It was who I got to share it with.  Good friends, whom I wouldn't have met had it not been for this blog (thankful!).  We divided and conquered the meal, leaving us with time to catch up, share some laughs, relax and imbibe.

Good living isn't only about the food you eat, it's about who you get to eat it with.



Cranberry Upside-Down Cake
Recipe by Shannon
Serves 8-12

A few notes on this cake;  the cake is not too sweet and could totally pass as breakfast.  The maple sugar imparts a subtle maple flavor, but if you can't find it feel free to substitute the regular stuff.  It also could be baked in a smaller skillet if you prefer a thicker layer of cake, increase the baking time a bit.

4T butter
1c maple sugar, divided
1T maple syrup
1/4c water
2 1/2c cranberries
1c white whole wheat flour
1/2c semolina flour  (or AP flour)
1/4-1/2t orange zest (I eye-balled this)
2t baking powder
1/4t salt
2 lg eggs
1c greek yogurt (I use 2%)
6T neutral oil (I used 2T melted coconut oil and 4T canola)

In an oven-proof 12" skillet, melt butter over medium heat until it starts to brown and smell nutty.  Whisk in 1/2c maple sugar, maple syrup and water and remove from the heat.  Let cool.

Preheat oven to 350deg.

Add cranberries to the skillet once cool, making sure to cover the surface of the skillet.  Sift dry ingredients (flours through salt) together into a medium bowl.  In a separate large bowl, whisk together eggs, yogurt, oil and 1/2c maple sugar.  Add dry ingredients and stir until just combined.  Dollup the batter onto the cranberries and spread into an even layer.   Bake for 35-45min, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes clean.

Cool the cake for 15min.  Place a plate/platter on top of the cake, then flip the skillet over and remove the skillet from on top of the cake.  Serve warm or RT.

Suggested accompaniments:  maple greek yogurt, maple whipped cream or ice cream

**Edited to add:  If you don't have a large enough skillet, you can also prepare this in a springform pan or cake pan.  Simply prepare the caramel sauce in a saucepan, and then pour into your desired pan lined with parchment paper (sprayed with nonstick spray on both sides).  Add cranberries (you might not need as much) and then proceed as above.  Adjust the cooking time according to the size of your pan and thickness of the batter.



As part of the Foodbuzz Featured Publisher program, I have been entered for the chance to win a trip to Greece courtesy of FAGE.  You too can enter to win one of three trips to Greece by entering the FAGE Plain Extraordinary Greek Getaway here:  http://www.fageusa.com/community/fage-greek-getaway.

23 comments:

Megan said...

Wow. It looks beautiful! Not a cranberry out of place. I made a cranberry tart last year with a crumble topping.

Erica said...

How fun! Im a huge cranberry fan and have never had a dessert like this! The caramelization looks just awesome

Victoria (The District Chocoholic) said...

Dear Shannon, I love you because I have been looking for a good cranberry upsidedown cake recipe and now I have one. My life is complete.

Fun and Fearless in Beantown said...

Yum! I love that you baked the cake in a cast iron skillet!

Emily @ A Cambridge Story said...

I'm literally about to email my mom and demand that this be on our Christmas menu. Looks incredible!

Elizabeth said...

I would absolutely love this. Maple whipped cream on top sounds wonderful

lauren @ Healthy Food For Living said...

You had me at "cranberries swimming in a browned-butter maple caramel"! Add cake batter, and I'm sold ;).

Elina (Healthy and Sane) said...

This was delicious... even better with some salted caramel ice cream :)

Daisy said...

what a cool way to bake a cake. looks perfect for turkey day!

Caratunk Girl said...

Yum.

Maple whipped cream...

Kelly said...

That looks gorgeous. I think my recipe creation process is very similar to yours. I usually consult about a dozen recipes and then end up creating some hybrid that speaks to my own unique tastes. The results of this look delicious. I have some frozen cranberries that I bought last year when they were on sale after the holiday and have been meaning to decide what to do with them. Perhaps a cake is in order.

In and Around Town said...

Such an amazing looking cake - I need to invest in an iron skillet. Great use of fresh cranberries.

brandi said...

um...are you bringing this to my house this weekend? :)

Ranjani said...

I am a fan of not-too-sweet cranberry recipes. I am also a fan of cake for breakfast! This looks fabulous

Joanne said...

Truer words were never spoken, chica. This reminds me of a cherry cornmeal upside down cake I made this past summer. And if it was as good as that (which I'm sure it is!) then damn was this good.

Lisa (bakebikeblog) said...

how very delicious! The only problem being that I cant get fresh cranberries in Australia :(

Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic said...

Your cranberry upside down cake looks beautiful! And I love what you said: "Good living isn't only about the food you eat, it's about who you get to eat it with." So true!!

betty said...

oh i love cranberries atm the dried stuff though mm id love to try these with blueberries though :)

Rosiecat said...

Shannon, you are the queen of cooking with Greek yogurt. This cake looks so good, and maple sugar? Yes please! Cake baked in a cast-iron skillet? YES, PLEASE!

Happy Thanksgiving, darlin'! xoxo

5 Star Foodie said...

Incredibly gorgeous upside down cake with cranberries, so perfect for a holiday party! Happy Thanksgiving!

Lizzy said...

Yum! I made a cake just like this two years ago for Thanksgiving and loved it!!!

Kerstin said...

The semolina flour sounds so great in this! Such a pretty cake - glad you had such a great gathering :)

Mary Ellen said...

This turned out beautifully (sometimes with upside down cakes, you never know ...). Sounds like a great recipe to try this time of year!

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