There has been an overabundance of caramel here in the Duchess' kitchen. I'm not complaining. I learned how to make my own caramel the other day with Chef (my hubby). I talked about it a little bit in my last post on pancakes. We made four cans and I couldn't let them go to waste. This past Sunday we were invited to a pizza party. An Italian pizza party with people from Italy that make really amazing pizza. I'm the designated dessert volunteer. I chose to try a new recipe with my caramel and my organic apples I had on hand. I also made an apple/mango ciambella (Romagnola style). The hostess requested it. And for my kids, I made a banana bread to keep here at the house. It is truly a miracle that we have good genes and are not all weeble wobbles. Or maybe it is this intense summer heat and we are all sweating off all the sweets every time we go outside?
I have been making an upside down plum cake for the last few years. I tweaked the recipe a little bit and was not sure how it would turn out. I had backup desserts to bring to the party in case it was a flop. It wasn't. The Upside-Down Dulce de Leche Organic Apple Cake was so moist. It has a stick of butter in the batter, but it was not heavy. This cake has probably a million calories. Per slice. If you are on a diet, like most of the women were at the dinner party the other night, you will forget about your diet for a few minutes and indulge in a slice of this rich, caramel, apple delight.
Upside-Down Dulce de Leche Organic Apple Cake
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, room temp (1/2 cup)
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup sour cream
1 mango finely chopped
1/2 apple finely chopped
2 apples (peeled, cored, and sliced to 1/4 inch thickness)
1 can of caramel
Preheat the oven to 375 F.
Prior to making the batter, saute' the mango and apple on the stove until tender. You will not need to add any liquid to this mixture if the mango is ripe because the mango will emit a large amount of moisture. When it is tender, mash the mango/apple mixture with a potato masher so it is nicely combined.
Add the flour, baking powder and salt to a small bowl and mix together the ingredients. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until well blended. Add in the eggs and vanilla; beat until blended. Next, beat in the flour mixture. Mix in the sour cream and then stir in the mango/apple puree'.
Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a cast iron skillet or 10 inch non-stick ovenproof skillet. Add the apple slices to the skillet and cook until they are golden brown. Add the can of caramel to the skillet. Arrange the apples in the skillet in a nice pattern. *I added a whole can of caramel so you could not see the apples on the bottom of cake when I flipped the skillet over when it was ready. But it doesn't matter, because it was off the hook good! You could add less caramel so you could see the pattern you make with your apples. I wasn't interested preserving the artistic integrity of this cake. It was all about the caramel.
This is how my cake looked when it was ready to be put in the oven. Notice how there is no pretty pattern to my apples. They are floating happily in a caramel/butter mixture.
This is how it looked when I took out of the oven.
And this is the baking lineup for the Italian pizza party. The banana bread stayed safe at home.
Here is another look at the cake in all it's rich, caramel glory.