Recpies

Spiced Nectarine Upside-Down Cake

My food processor died  last week and  I was disappointed because I was hoping to buy an ice cream maker.  One of my favorite blogger was giving out a free kitchen aid food processor and I was hoping to be the lucky winner. Well I didn’t win.  I really didn’t want to buy one a new one because food processors are expensive.

Why are they still expensive and blenders are cheap to buy?

 It took me years before I purchased my first one.   I ended replacing my food processor instead since it’s something that I use all the time.  It’s only a matter of time before my blender stops working.  Talk about bad timing. Luckily the holidays is coming up soon.

Sorry for rambling.  I can’t help it.

So, I’ve made a upside-down cake for the first time. I wasn’t sure how well the cake would turn out.  I was afraid that I would burn the caramel sauce and the cake would be stuck in the pan.  But carefully following the instructions, it was  a delicious and easy cake to make.  Now I’m ready to tackle a pineapple upside-down cake.

Spiced Nectarine Upside-Down Cake

Adapted from Deblicious 

Author Note:

In the original recipe Deb uses peaches but any stone fruit would work in here.  I left out the brandy and cardamom because I didn’t have it on hand.  If you can’t find have brandy and cardamom, don’t worry about it.

This is a good cake.  It can be enjoyed plain or eaten with whip cream.  I even like cake at room temperature with a cup of coffee for breakfast.

Caramel Sauce:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground cardamom
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons brandy
3 firm nectarines, sliced with the skin on

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium sauce pan, stir together the butter, brown sugar, salt, cardamom, vanilla and brandy over low heat. Keep stirring until the sugar melts and the mixture starts to bubble and thicken.

Pour the caramel sauce into the cake pan and arrange the sliced nectarines over the caramel.    Set cake pan aside.

Cake Batter:

1/2 cup unsalted  butter
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Keep the pan over the flame, and continue swishing the butter round until it browns and emits a nutty fragrance. Immediately take the pan off the heat and pour the browned butter into a mixing bowl.

While the browned butter is cooling, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg and salt; set this aside.

Go back to your browned butter, and beat in the sugar and vanilla. Before you add the eggs, make sure the butter is completely cooled because you don’t want your eggs to scramble.  Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in 1/3 of the flour mixture into the butter mixture, followed by 1/4 cup of the buttermilk. Mix in half of the remaining flour, followed by the rest of the buttermilk. Finally, gently fold in the rest of the flour.

Spread the cake batter over the nectarines and bake for about 30-35 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown and springs back when lightly prodded. Allow the cake to rest in the tin for about 5 minutes before inverting it onto a serving platter. Don’t let the cake cool for more than 5 minutes because the caramel and nectarine will stick to the pan.

Banana Muffins

Good morning everyone!  How would you like a baked banana muffin to start your day?

Banana Muffins

Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

In the original recipe, the muffins are frosted in a  mascarpone cream cheese frosting and topped with toasted walnuts.   If you can’t find mascarpone, just substitute the mascarpone for cream cheese frosting.  What ever you decide to use, the muffins should still taste great.  I decided not to frost the cake because I was serving these muffins for breakfast.

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 ripe bananas, peeled and coarsely mashed

Line 18 muffin cups with paper liners. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium bowl to blend. Beat the sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl to blend. Stir in the banana. Add the dry ingredients and stir just until blended.

Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups. Bake the muffins on the middle rack until the tops are golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out with no crumbs attached, about 25 minutes. Transfer the muffins to a rack and cool slightly.