This cake can qualify as my favorite cake of all cakes that I make. Daughter of the French Madame Tarte Tatin, she alone rules the kingdom of cakes. Fresh exotic pineapple combined with a dense cake flavored with butter and baked in a container filled with melted candy that, once turned and unmolded, creates an experience…a miracle when it comes out and the caramel begins to bathe her like a waterfall of butter and caramel.
Read Related: The Sweet Life: Great-Grandmother’s Poundcake
PINEAPPLE UPSIDE DOWN CAKE
4 TBSP unsalted butter
¾ cup brown sugar
1 fresh pineapple (peeled, cored and cut into ¼” thick rings)
Pinch of salt
½ cup butter (softened at room temperature)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 TSP vanilla extract
2 large eggs (separated)
1½ cups white flour
2 TSP baking powder
¼ TSP salt
½ cup milk
¼ TSP cream of tartar
- Melt the sugar and cook over medium heat in a skillet until caramel begins to form. Cook until it turns dark brown and begins to smell burnt. Remove pan from the heat, add butter, star anise, and stir slowly until it forms a thick, rich caramel. Using a wooden spoon, stir the caramel until thick and smooth. Pour the caramel into a greased and floured 10-12 “springform pan for cakes. Arrange fruit in caramel and set aside.
- To make the cake, cream the butter and sugar until creamy and pale, add the salt and vanilla to the yolks and set the whites aside. Sift the dry ingredients. Add the flour to the mixture of butter and sugar, alternating between the two until you have a smooth dough making sure to stop and scrape the sides halfway to incorporate any bits stuck to the bowl.
- Now to make the meringue: place the egg whites with the cream of tartar in a clean, dry bowl with a whisk. Beat egg whites until soft peaks, add 1 TSP sugar and beat until stiff peaks. Now fold the meringue gently into the batter in two parts until completely incorporated.
- Pour mixture over pineapple and bake at 350 ° F for 30-45 minutes until a knife inserted in center comes out clean.
- Carefully invert the pan onto a plate (careful with hot caramel!) and serve with vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt.