This has been my only pineapple upside down cake recipe forever. I cannot count the times I made it for my parents for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, birthday dinners, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. It was their very favorite and I made sure they had it often. If you can bake it in a cast iron pan, you’ll end up with a slightly crispy outside that you will go crazy over, as well as a tender moist cake. It isn’t necessary to use a cast iron pan, but as with cornbread, cast iron will give you the best results. It is truly a beautiful cake, and if baking it for guests, trust me; they WILL be impressed.
You will note that my recipe calls for crushed pineapple instead of rings. I’ve done this for years because you get a full taste of pineapple with every bite, instead of hit or miss. I chop my nuts for the same reason. Cherries? I really don’t count them. I just drain some on a flat dish, cut them in half, and place them all over until it looks pretty, and call it good.
This recipe makes a 9 x 9. Double to make a 9 x 13 (The batter will be too much for an 8” pan. It’s very fluffy. If you only have 8”, make a mini cake with the leftover batter)
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup shortening
1 tsp vanilla extract
¾ cup milk
½ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp allspice
¾ tsp cinnamon
1 ¼ cup AP flour
¼ cup butter
½ cup brown sugar
1 small can (8 ½ oz) crushed pineapple in juice, drained
12 maraschino cherries, cut in half
6 pecan halves or walnuts (I like to chop them)
In mixer bowl, beat sugar and shortening until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat well. Add vanilla, milk, salt, baking powder, allspice and cinnamon. Mix well. Add flour, and mix. Set aside.
In whatever metal cake pan you’re using, put it right on the burner to melt the butter. (If using glass pans, melt butter in microwave). Remove from heat. Sprinkle brown sugar over butter and make sure to spread the butter and sugar evenly. Next, add the drained pineapple. (I hope you drink the juice. My kids always fought over it when they were little). Evenly spread out the halved cherries and nuts. Pour batter on last and bake 35-45 min at 350° F. Use the toothpick test.
Here comes the fun part. Put the cake on a wire rack. Place whatever gorgeous serving dish you’re going to serve your cake on, upside down on top of the cake. Wait ten minutes. Using pot holders, pick up plate and pan together. Flip it over, and like magic, the cake will pop right out. Every once in a while you’ll get a small bit of the topping that stays in the pan. No problem. Since this cake needs to look perfect, take a butter knife and scrape it out of the pan. Spread it on the cake and blend it in. Nobody will ever see it.
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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2015