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Photo courtesy of Kraft Foods website.
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake History:
The upside-down cake, which was so popular in the '50s and '60s, is again gaining in popularity. No wonder - it's still wonderful!
Use your old cast-iron frying pan. The heavy pan keeps the butter from burning, and the handle makes it easy to flip the cake upside down when it is done.
According to most historians, the late 1800s were when the term “upside
down cake” first began appearing. Up until that time, this type of cake
was referred to as skillet cakes. This was because ovens have not always
been common or reliable, skillet cakes were born of practicality. Cakes
were made in the popular cast-iron skillets on top of the stove.
Inverting a cake to reveal a topping was very popular as far back as the
The first upside-down cakes were not even made with pineapple, but with
seasonal fruits such as apples and cherries, as the canned pineapple
hadn’t been invented yet. Canned pineapple manufacturing didn’t begin
until 1901 when Jim Dole established the Hawaiian Pineapple Company (now Dole Company) and began
producing and marketing mass quantities of canned pineapple.
In 1925, the Hawaiian Pineapple Company sponsored a contest calling for
pineapple recipes with judges from the Fannie Farmer’s School, Good
Housekeeping, and McCall’s Magazine on the judging panel. It is said
that 2,500 of the 60,000 submissions were recipes for pineapple
upside-down cake. The company decided to run an ad about the flood of
pineapple upside-down cake recipes it had received, and the cake’s
Pineapple upside-down cakes began appearing in magazines, cookbooks, and
advertisements. In 1927, a booklet was published called
Aunt Sammy's Radio Recipes,
Developed by the Bureau of Home Economics, U.S. Department of
Agriculture, and written by Ruth Van Deman and Fanny Walker Yeatman.
The booklet was a compilation of 70 menus and about 300 recipes
broadcast from October 1926 to June 1927 in the "Housekeepers' Chat"
programs of the radio service.
How To Season A Cast-Iron Pan.
Check out the
Basic Rules For Baking or here for
Secrets of a Successful Cake. Also check out more great
Cast-Iron Cooking Recipes.
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Recipe:
Yields: 8 servings
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 50 min
Pineapple Topping (see recipe below)
1 cup all-purpose
3/4 cup granulated
1 1/2 teaspoons
1/4 teaspoon salt
egg, room temperature
1/2 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon grated
1 teaspoon fresh-squeezed
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Prepare Pineapple Topping.
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add egg, milk, and vegetable shortening; beat 2 minutes.
Add reserved 2 tablespoons pineapple syrup, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla extract; beat 2 minutes.
Pour cake batter over prepared pineapple slices in the frying pan, spreading evenly.
Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool 5 minutes on a wire rack.
Run knife around edge of pan to loosen; cover with a cake plate and invert. Serve warm.
Makes 8 servings.
1/4 cup butter
2/3 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
1 (1-pound, 4 ounce) can sliced pineapple
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped nuts
10-inch cast iron frying pan or a 9x2-inch cake pan over low heat, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar until well blended. Remove from heat.
Drain canned pineapple, reserving 2 tablespoons pineapple syrup (for cake batter). Arrange drained pineapple slices onto top of sugar mixture.
Place a maraschino cherry in center of each slice. Sprinkle with chopped nuts.
Set aside until ready to pour the prepared cake batter on top.