cake

In the latest edition of Cravings That Overcome Me At The Fruit Shop, there I was, staring at a peeled and cored but still whole Australian pineapple, and I knew that I could not rest until I had turned said pineapple into my very first pineapple upside-down cake. I have been thinking about cake a lot lately. Actually, I've been thinking about lots of things lately, as we settle into life in Melbourne and I continue to search for a job, house, etc. (In the immortal words of Coldplay, nobody said it was easy).  

Anyway! A dream Sunday morning at the market was had, including oysters and coffee and the purchase of the aforementioned pineapple. It was then home (to our temporary accomodation) to make scrambled eggs and then guacamole, and a frittata for lunches using all the veggies languishing in the fridge, and Tom made a lamb's heart stew, and I whipped up this cake. So unnecessary, and very over the top, but also very satisfying (baking always make me feel better, even if just a little) and very delicious: a warm, golden, sweet delicious hug in the form of cake for pudding. 

Recipe inside!

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Makes 1 x 22-23cm cake (9-inch)

 

For the topping:

4 tbsp unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing

½ cup brown sugar

1 x 440g tin pineapple rings, or fresh pineapple

6-7 star anise

 

For the cake:

1 ½ cups plain flour

¼ tsp salt

1 cup sugar (I used brown sugar and it made a lovely golden cake)   

115g butter

2 free range eggs

 

Heat oven to 175 degrees celsius and grease a 22 -23cm (9-inch) round cake pan with butter.

For the topping, melt the butter and sugar over medium heat, constantly stirring. It will be done when the sugar is bubbly and a darker brown. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and spread slightly to make an even layer. Set aside to cool slightly.
 

Remove the pineapple rings from the can and reserve 1/2 cup of the juice. Set a single ring in the center of the cake tin, then arrange remaining rings (or half rings if you’re like me) around the centre. Place a star anise in the middle of each ring. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt together and set aside.

Cream the sugar and butter together with an electric mixer or hand beaters until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs and beat until smooth, about 1 minute more.

With the mixer on low speed, add 1/3 of the flour mixture and mix until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Add 1/2 of the pineapple juice, mixing until smooth, about 30 seconds. Add another 1/2 of the remaining flour and mix again for about 30 seconds, followed by the remaining pineapple juice and 30 seconds of mixing. Finally, add the remaining flour mixture and mix until completely smooth, about 1 minute total.

Use a large spoon to dollop large spoonfuls of the batter evenly over the fruit in the pan (it will be thick). Smooth the batter, then tap the cake pan lightly on the bench to settle the batter.

Bake for 45 minutes, until the cake is a dark golden-brown and a cake tester comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven to a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Invert a plate over the cake pan and, using kitchen towels or oven mitts to grasp onto both the plate and the cake pan, flip both the pan and the plate over so the pan now sits on top of the plate. Slowly lift the cake pan away. Serve the cake warm with whipped coconut cream and a zest of lime.  

Can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

 

// Posted by Delaney at 9:17 PM // Labels: cake, pineapple

I've been away a lot this year, as trips to Wellington have been required, and weddings have been attended. Weddings in Hobart, and Nelson, and Omaha, and Hawke's Bay. I went hunting and foraging in North Canterbury (more about that later) and I finished a book project (more about that later, too). Most recently though I was in Melbourne (a pattern is emerging, I know, but trust me when I say there will be more about that shortly) and when I got home late last week it was with both an overweight suitcase and a sense of relief. To have a weekend mostly devoid of plans was a joy, and as a result I did what I did best: caught up with people, drank beer and ranted about gender equality, and ate.

// Posted by Delaney at 9:45 PM // Labels: auckland, eating, burgers, cake, beer

I’ve told this story a thousand times, but there’s cake at the end so bear with me. When I was 25 I started a food blog called Heartbreak Pie. I had seen a few food blogs overseas and thought “I could do that” plus I was freshly single, so I started writing about cooking and eating to make myself feel better. I didn’t think anyone, except for maybe a few food blogging American ladies, would read it. It was a cathartic, creative outlet which gave me something to do at night in my then shitty and cold and damp Mt Vic flat. They were the days before instagram, before excessive oversharing on the internet was commonplace, and at the time it felt very new and fun and exciting.

I am now 32 and thinking about some of the stuff I wrote and put on the internet makes me criiiiiinge, a bit like reading a teenage diary except that heaps of people have read it. Yeesh. Anyway! So last year I had a bit of a rebrand (/blog identity crisis) and decided my internet food writing could just happen under my name, and so I quietly removed Heartbreak Pie from the public eye (RIP/good riddance), had a bit of a party, launched delaneymes.com, and so here we are.

Recipe inside!

Plum and yoghurt cake

Ingredients

125g butter

200g white sugar

2 eggs

150g plain flour (I often use spelt flour, which is lovely and light)

1½ tsp baking powder

50g ground almonds

220g natural or greek yoghurt

1 x 850g tin black doris plums 

 

Preheat oven to 190C and line a 22cm cake tin with baking paper and butter. Drain the tin of plums into a sieve (handy hint! I mixed the plum liquid with some water and froze it into ice cubes/spheres to fancy-up my drinks).

Cream together the butter and sugar very well, until pale and fluffy. Thistakes ages. When you think it's done, give it another couple of minutes. You want genuinely pale and soft. It will be worth it!

Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Sift the flour and baking powder over the butter mixture. Gently fold together until incorporated (I use my cake mixer on very low speed here).

Add the yoghurt and ground almonds, and mix to combine (again I use my cake mixer, but a spoon works fine!)

Scrape the cake mixture into the prepared tin. Remove the stones from the plums and gently press plum halves (they break in half easily) into the top of the cake. 

Bake for 50 minutes until golden. Turn the oven off, but leave the cake in the oven until cool (overnight is fine). This will help set the cake, although it's totally fine removed after 50 minutes and left to cool on a rack as normal. 

When ready to serve, dust the cake with a little icing sugar, and serve with yoghurt. It's also good gently warmed with softly whipped cream, and it's also really good with a thin layer of cream cheese icing made with just vanilla extract, lime or lemon juice, and a teency bit of icing sugar. Enjoy!  

// Posted by Delaney at 9:50 PM // Labels: cake, heartbreak pie, plums, baking

After the frenetic madness that was the Netball World Cup (in case you missed it the Silver Ferns won Silver, my little sister included), my 31st birthday (there were tequila shots), and a week in Wellington for Visa Wellington on a Plate, things (touch wood) feel a little calmer at the moment, and I've thoroughly enjoyed being back in the kitchen. Althought the blog gets a little neglected, I've still been hard at work, taking photos, writing recipes, hustling for dollars, and baking cakes. 

// Posted by Delaney at 1:46 PM // Labels: cake, herald on sunday, caramel