22 June 2012

The Ugliest Cake I've Ever Made

not as ugly from the side....

Last weekend the boys and I went to pick blackberries.  My five year old was psyched until he saw the thorns on the bushes.  He was still determined to have me fill up his bucket with blackberries though.  We went to a public farm, and the outer berries had been picked earlier in the week.  There were still lots of good berries to be had, but they were buried in the middle of the bushes.  My forearms show the marks of the thorns, but the four pints of blackberries we got were totally worth the scrapes.

With a huge bag of blackberries I knew needed to make something blog-worthy out of them.  I contemplated making another cobbler.  The Lemon Cobbler I posted earlier this week turned out so yummy, I wanted more.  When I make cobbler out of fresh blackberries I use a teaspoon of cinnamon in the batter, and the cakey part of the cobbler tastes sort of oatmeal cookie-ish.  The family almost fights over who gets the first steaming hot piece with a big scoop of ice cream on top.  

I decided to make a cake last night instead.  I have had a craving for pineapple upside-down cake lately, but haven't gotten around to making one.  So I thought I would make an upside down cake, but try it with blackberries instead of the pineapple.  Fresh peaches are also just getting ripe and I bought a couple at the local grocery store next door to my office.  I figured if I threw the two together I could have a winning combination.

An upside down cake is one of the fastest, easiest cakes you can make since you don't have to fuss with cooling it down and frosting it.  They can also be beautiful, with all that gooey, caramelized fruit on top.  My Blackberry-Peach Upside-Down Cake was not so beautiful, hence the title of this post.  This was literally the ugliest cake I have ever made.  I almost didn't take pictures.  As a matter of fact, I didn't take pictures until I had a slice.  It was such a great combination: rich caramel, bittersweet blackberries and peaches, and buttery-soft cake.  I can't recommend it enough.  Just throw some whipped cream or ice cream on top to hide its not-so-beautiful appearance.

This has a slightly unusual addition to the gooey caramel makings for the top -- instant espresso powder.  It adds a great depth of flavor to the caramel topping of this cake.  The addition of the espresso powder is what made this cake so ugly.  The espresso powder combined with the blackberry juice made the top a really dark, muddy brown color.  You could leave the espresso powder out and make a prettier cake, but you're missing out if you do.

not pretty but fruity, gooey deliciousness

Blackberry-Peach Upside-Down Cake

Print me, Please!!!

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
3/4 c dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp instant espresso powder
1 c blackberries
2 peaches, sliced

3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°.  Pour melted butter in bottom of 8" round cake pan.  Sprinkle brown sugar over the butter, then sprinkle espresso powder over.  Arrange blackberries and peaches over the top.  Combine all batter ingredients.  This mixture will look too thick at first, but will come together afer about 30 seconds of mixing.  Pour batter over topping.  Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown and the top springs back when gently touched.
Let cake cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then invert onto a serving plate.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

1 comment:

  1. I need to go pick blackberries and make this. Or blueberries. It looks so good!




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