Saturday, December 11, 2010

Apple Upside-Down Cake

Was recommended this cake recipe by Bakertan. He raved about how good this cake is, so upon chancing on some rare Golden Delicious apples at NTUC, I decided to give it a shot. This is my first upside down cake. Have been seeing these cake recipes in my baking books but didn't have the courage to try them. But guess I gotta break off the cookie-brownie-muffin baking stint and progress further. Also pretty excited to announce that I open ceremony-ed my expensive $26 silicone spatula for this recipe!! /sword fights with spatula

Think I underbaked the cake a little, could use a few more minutes in the oven. But nevertheless, the cake was superb in texture - moist yet light, giving the melt-in-your-mouth sensation upon hitting your tongue. The undertone sweetness of warm brown sugar caramel marries tartiness of Golden Delicious apples, blending well with the moist cake crumbs. This is definitely not going to be the last upside down cake I'm baking.

A little caramel bleeding at the crime scene

Apple Upside-Down Cake (adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum's Rose's Heavenly Cakes)

Apple & Walnut Topping:
454g apples, peeled, cored and sliced 1/4" thick
1 tsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
72g light brown sugar, preferably Muscovado
57g unsalted butter
66g walnut halves

1. Preheat oven to 175°C. Prepare a 9" cake pan, encircled with a cake strip, bottom coated with shortening, topped with a parchment round
2. In a medium bowl, toss together the apples, lemon juice, and 2 tbsp of brown sugar. Allow mixture to sit for at least 30 mins or up to 1 1/2h. Drain the apples, reserving their liquid
3. In a small saucepan, preferably nonstick, melt the butter. Use abt 1 tbsp to coat the parchment-lined bottom and sides of the cake pan
4. Add remaining brown sugar and reserved liquid that has drained from apples to the butter remaining in the saucepan
5. Bring to boil, stirring constantly with a light-colored silicone spatula, then stop stirring, but leave the spatula in place to judge the color, and simmer for abt 3 mins, until bubbling thickly and deep amber in color
6. Pour this mixture (do not scrape) into the prepared cake pan, tilting to coat the entire bottom. Don't worry if the mixture hardens; it will melt during baking
7. Place apple slices, overlapping slightly, on the bottom and around the sides of the pan. Set aside
8. Spread walnuts evenly on a baking sheet and bake for abt 7 mins to enhance their flavor. Stir once or twice to ensure even toasting and avoid over browning. Cool completely. Chop coarsely and set aside

56g egg yolks, room temperature (abt 3)
121g sour cream
1 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
150g cake flour, sifted
150g superfine sugar
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
128g unsalted butter, room temperature

1. In a medium bowl, whisk the yolks, 2 tbsp of sour cream and vanilla until just combined
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt on low speed for 30 secs
3. Add the butter and remaining sour cream, mix on low speed until dry ingredients are moistened
4. Raise speed to medium and beat for 1 1/2 mins. Scrape down sides of the bowl
5. Starting on medium-low speed, gradually add egg mixture to the batter in 2 parts, beating on medium speed for 30 secs after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure. Scrape down sides of bowl
6. Using a silicone spatula, drop batter in big blobs on top of apples. Then smooth the surface evenly with a small offset spatula while keeping the apples in an attractive pattern
7. Place pan in oven. Bake for 35 to 45 mins or until golden brown, a wire cake tester inserted in the centre comes out clean, and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the centre
8. Run a small metal spatula between the sides of the pan and the cake, pressing firmly against the pan, and invert the cake at once onto a serving plate. Leave the pan in place for 1 to 2 mins before lifting it off. If any apple slices have stuck to the pan, use a small metal spatula to place them back on the cake
9. Scatter the toasted walnuts on top. Serve warm or room temperature


  1. looks yummy! (: i have many fruits upside down recipe too but didnt know why i didnt give it a try. xP bookmarked! (: (:

  2. Hey jean,

    I din include the walnuts when i did my cake. Kind of regretted it. Yours look truly complete with the walnuts. congrats on your heavenly cake! yummy yummy~ Rose is indeed the queen of cakes. Look forward to your upcoming heavenly cakes!

    what other heavenly cakes do you have on your mind?

  3. i love the different texture of having the walnut and apple together... YUM!

  4. thanks everyone! :D

    Bakertan: Actually I think the walnuts kinda ruin the picture even though they provide the crunch to the soft cake. The one in the book doesn't have walnuts too and it shows off the apple slices pattern beautifully.

  5. AM so thrilled to find ur lovely blog , oh those chiffon cakes have me going gaga and i must try one now too:-)have been wanting to for awhile!
    Loving the topping of ut cake , perfect match for the apples and i thik a bit underbaked is ok coz it continues baking for a bit no?
    Looks absolutely delish !

  6. Got to try baking this cake. I love apple and caramel cake. I'm still waiting for this book to arrive from my online purchase....

  7. Sugar Plum Fairy: thanks for visiting and your praises :P

    Zoe: it's a really good cake book. She's detailed in her instructions, I bet you'll love the book as well