Thursday, September 9, 2010

A Sweet New Year with Nectarine Upside-Down Cake

The reason for the title of this post is because today is the start of the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah and for this holiday, you typically eat lots of sweet foods to symbolize the start of a sweet new year.  I celebrated with my family of course and went to my aunt Hela and uncle Andy's house for Rosh Hashanah dinner.  I decided to contribute dessert, and tried to bring it to the next level with an earthy nectarine upside-down cake.

The recipe for this cake came from Martha Stewart's
Everyday Food magazine.  I liked it because I tend to favor fruit desserts, and thought it would provide a break from the typical honey-based treats that are customary on this holiday.  My family loved it and some people even went back for seconds.  My cousin went as far as to say it was a "grandma" dessert, meaning that it was comforting and nostalgic.  I was happy to hear it!

Here's the recipe.  If you choose to make it, I can guarantee that you won't disappoint your guests.

Nectarine Upside-Down Cake

(serves 8)

10 tbs of unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
4 cups of frozen nectarines (or fresh if you have them), cut into bite-sized pieces
1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp of baking soda
1/2 tsp of coarse salt
3/4 cup of granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup of plain Greek yogurt

Preheat oven to 325.  Place 4 tbsp of butter in a 9-inch round cake pan (2 inches deep) and melt in the oven.  Remove pan from oven and sprinkle brown sugar evenly over butter.

With 2 double-thick layers of paper towels, press as much liquid as possible out of nectarines.  Skip this step if using fresh nectarines.  Arrange fruit in an even layer in pan.

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat 6 tbs of butter on high until light and fluffy.  Add granulated sugar and beat until well combined.  Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping down bowl as needed.  Beat in vanilla.  With mixer on low, add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with 2 additions of yogurt, and beat to combine.

With a spatula, spread batter over nectarines.  Bake until cake is dark golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour and 10 minutes.  Let cake cool in pan on a wire rack, 15 minutes.  Run a knife around the edge of the pan and invert cake on to a serving plate.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

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