Cranberry Upside Down Cake

Happy Christmas one and all! Here I am celebrating in the woods of Maine, where, sadly, there is no white Christmas and it’s 52F. Still wonder and nice though. And I made this Cranberry Upside Down Cake for Christmas dessert. It’s not much of a looker, but tastes fantastic — that whole combination of sweet and tart, with a little bit of cinnamon, clove and ginger. Also a touch of whipped cream add to the mix. Anyway, enjoy the day!

for the topping
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries

for the Cake
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Scant pinch ground cloves
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 cup sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
1/4 cup of milk

Note: The cake shown here in the photo is modified to fit a 6-inch pan, but the recipe is for using a 9-inch pan. Note that the pan must have at least 2 inch sides.

Generously spray the bottom and sides of a 9-inch diameter cake pan.

In a small saucepan, place the 4 tablespoons of butter and the 3/4 cups of packed brown sugar. On medium high heat, stir the sugar as the butter melts. Once the butter is melted and mixed in well with the sugar, stop stirring and let the mixture simmer for 15 seconds or so. Pour the brown sugar butter mixture into the prepared cake pan. Spread the cranberries on top of the sugar butter mixture.

Preheat oven to 350F. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ground ginger, and ground cloves. In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter until light. Add the sugar and beat together the sugar and butter until fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in the orange zest. Mix a third of the dry ingredients into the mixture. Beat in half of the sour cream. Mix in another third of the dry ingredients. Mix in the remaining sour cream. Beat in the remaining dry ingredients and then the milk. Pour batter over the cranberries in the cake pan, and smooth the surface. Be gentle with the pour (or use a ladle at the beginning) so that the berries and sugar is not pushes off to the sides.

Place in the preheated oven and lower the heat from 350F to 325F. Bake until a tester comes out clean, 55 minutes to an hour. Cool cake in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes. Run a blunt knife around the inside rim of the cake pan to loosen the cake from the sides of the pan. Then turn the cake out onto a platter. Serve warm or at room temperature; some lightly sweetened, vanilla scented whipped cream will go nicely with this.



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