Old-Fashioned Pineapple Upside Down Cake has a very interesting history! It is one of my favorite cakes to make for special occasions, and makes the perfect cake to take to backyard cookouts or gatherings. Serve it with a dollop of fresh whipped cream to really bring it "over the top!"
Did you know?
Pineapple Upside Down Cake was invented because several other convenience items were developed that gave the housewife time to make a cake pretty as well as delicious
The idea of cooking a cake upside down, is an old technique that started centuries ago when cakes were cooked in cast iron skillets. It was easy for cook to add fruit and sugar in the bottom of the pan and a simple cake batter on top and put it over the fire to cook. Then flipping it over onto a plate was a natural way to show the pretty fruit and let it run into the cake as well.
The idea of the pineapple soon after 1911 when one of James Dole's engineer had invented a machine to cut his pineapples into nice rings. Soon the convenient and pretty rings were used in this age old technique of the skillet cake. The invention of the maraschino cherry added the necessary color needed to make this cake stunning.
The first recorded recipe for Pineapple Upside Down Cake:
According to John Mariani's ( The Dictionary of American Food and Drink , Revised Edition, 1994), "The first mention in print of such a cake was in 1930, and was so listed in the 1936 Sears Roebuck catalog, but the cake is somewhat older." In Fashionable Food: Seven Decades of Food Fads (1995), Sylvia Lovegren traces pineapple upside-down cake to a 1924 Seattle fund-raising cookbook...While rooting around in old women's magazines I found a Gold Medal Flour ad with a full-page, four-color picture of Pineapple Upside-Down Cake--a round cake with six slices of pineapple, candied red cherries, and a brown sugar glaze. The date: November 1925." American Century Cookbook: The Most Popular Recipes of the 20th Century, Jean Anderson (p. 432) (source: The Kitchen Project)
1/3 cup Butter
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
12 slices Dole pineapple well-drained
1 (10-ounce) jar maraschino cherries, stems removed (or fresh sweet pitted cherries)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbls baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2/3 cup butter, softened
3 large farm fresh eggs
2 1/2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup milk
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt 1/3 cup butter in 9 x 13-inch ungreased baking pan in oven. Stir in 3/4 cup brown sugar. Spread mixture evenly in pan. Arrange 12 pineapple slices on top. Place cherry in center of each pineapple slice, if desired.
Combine flour, baking powder and salt in bowl; set aside.
Combine 1 cup brown sugar and 2/3 cup butter in bowl; beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy. Continue beating, adding eggs 1 at a time, until well mixed. Stir in vanilla.
Gradually add flour mixture alternately with milk, beating at low speed and scraping bowl often after each addition.
Gently spread batter over pineapple. Bake 35-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Loosen sides of cake from pan by running knife around inside of pan. Invert cake onto serving platter; let stand 5 minutes. Remove pan. Cool completely.
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