Nectarine Upside Down Cake
I never dreamed I would be so lucky as to have someone associate my baking with bestselling literotica, so when it happened, I knew I’d really done something right. This cake was thrown together on a last minute whim after returning home from the farmers market with 5 pounds of gorgeous nectarines just asking to be eaten. Knowing I had enough to make a cobbler (obvs requisite) AND something else, too, the idea of upside down cake began tantalizing me.
So sweet, so caramel-y, so summery, so perfect. After a bit of an incident the first time out of the oven, the thing finally got the heat it deserved and transformed itself into an insanely delectable beauty. It was steamy and caramelized and soft and hard and sweet and crunch and spicy in all the right places. So much so, in fact, that this happened (I’m in blue):
And, folks, that’s how I knew the cake had come out alright. Want some? Here’s the recipe ; ). (Big thanks to Renee Loux for inspiring the cake batter, which is more crumbcake-y than fluffy, just fyi. And p.s., this cake is entirely vegan except for the butter in the caramel—and you could probably sub coconut oil in for that, as well.)
5-7 nectarines, depending on size, thickly sliced
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp. salted butter
2 Tbsp. coconut oil
1/4 tsp. salt
2 1/4 cups flour
1.5 tsp. cinnamon
3 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/4 tsp. apple cider vinegar
2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup safflower oil
3/4 cup blend of agave and maple syrup
1/3 cup almond milk
Preheat oven to 350°. Melt butter and coconut oil on medium-low heat in a 9 inch round cake pan, pie dish, or cast iron skillet. Add sugar and 1/4 tsp. salt and stir until melted. Take off heat and let cool.
Whisk together dry ingredients in large bowl. Whisk together wet ingredients in medium bowl. Combine, but be careful not to overwork the batter.
Lay out your slices on top of the caramelized sugar in any kind of fancy pattern you like (concentric circles are awesome, but I’m sure there’s some other amazing stuff you could do, too—like a Fibonacci sequence. Go ahead, Janson and I double dare you). Pour the batter on top. Place in the oven with a piece of tinfoil underneath to catch caramel spillage. Bake 40-50 minutes, until everything is totally bubbly and caramel-y and a knife in the cake comes out clean. Don’t overbake.
Let cool for 20 minutes, then run a knife around the edge. Place a large plate upside down on top of the cake, and using both hands, turn the cake over onto the plate. Serve warm (and reheat next day before serving), with whipped cream or yogurt.