Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Retro, amusing, juicy, fragrant: truly a cake to please many people. And easy to make too, what more could you wish for? The cake comes out of the tin with its own decoration so you don’t even need to ice it. You could eat this as a pudding, with cream or yoghurt, but because there’s no pineapple juice in the batter it has quite a firm cake texture and will hold together as a piece of cake.
Our Seniors Lunch Group took a quiet moment to commemorate Remembrance Day this week and read out some poems. Several people in the group had fathers or other relatives who fought in the First and Second World Wars, some of whom are buried in France. A common theme is that people who fought generally didn’t do much reminiscing. If they were lucky enough to come home, they kept their memories to themselves, except for the silly things. One friend of a member was a POW – he came home highly proficient at bridge, he’d put his empty hours to good use. He taught all his friends in Manchester to play bridge but he never talked about the camp.
We’re never solemn for very long and were soon exchanging encouraging stories about the Service Animals who are also commemorated at this time. Many pigeons have been awarded the Dickin medal for animal bravery, so we felt a little more friendly to the pigeons in our gardens who are raiding the feeders.
Serves 12 – 16 (makes 16 portions but you might find some disappear before they get to the tin if you’ve got family around watching you like a hawk)
Timings: 20 minutes preparation, 1-hour cooking.
For the cake:
Grease and line a 24cm square cake tin. If you are using a loose-bottom tin, wrap the bottom of the tin in kitchen foil and place the whole thing on a baking tray with a lip – just to stop any juices oozing out and catching on the oven floor.
Melt the 50g butter and brown sugar together in a small pan and pour into the bottom of your cake tin. Arrange the pineapple rings artistically in the cake tin and dot the cherries around, in the centre of the pineapple rings or around the edges, as you like.
Sieve the flour and baking powder together. (You need the baking powder to encourage the rise, as it can be inhibited by the pineapple so the rising agent in the self-raising needs a bit of extra help).
Beat the butter and the sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time with a spoonful of flour each time, then fold in the rest of the flour with a metal spoon.
Scoop the mixture into the cake tin, on top of the pineapple rings and smooth it. Cook for about 1 hour until the top is light brown and a skewer comes out clean.
Let it cool for only a short time in the tin (you don’t want the sugary juices to set and start to stick) and then turn it out onto a plate. Turn it out onto the plate you are going to serve it from not onto a rack. This is not a cake you want to keep flipping about as the pineapple rings will fall off. You don’t mind if the cake cools on a plate and not on a rack and therefore is a little moister than a classic Victoria Sponge, that’s part of the point.
I cut mine into 16 squares for serving round the Lunch Club group and everyone got a fair share of pineapple and glace cherry.
A Hug from the Kitchen
Healthy, hearty, happy food, for good times and bad. Cheer yourself up, or spread the cheer around your family and friends.