I think I couldn’t have picked a better cake to celebrate the arrival of Fall. I know anything with apples is usually a big hit, but apricots are still around and I can’t say no to that. The combination of apricots and cinnamon makes this a transitional cake, summer moving into autumn.
Some of the trees have started to lose their leaves and the days are getting shorter and colder. But I love autumn. I love the colorful leaves on the roads, foggy mornings and cold evenings when all I want to do is to wrap myself in a blanket and watch a good movie. And cake fits into that, right?
I am now watching season 3 of Revenge. Any fans of that show here? I’ve seen some of it before, but I never finished the whole season, so I’m glad it’s finally on Netflix. Revenge doesn’t have anything to do with this apricot cake though, but the last piece I ate was while watching it, so that is something.
I just love upside down cakes. They aren’t difficult to make, they can look pretty impressive, they make a delicious dessert or a treat for when you have people over. But they’re also great to just nibble on or wrap in foil and take to work for a snack, without making a huge mess.
Whew, that’s a lot of reasons for loving cake. Hopefully enough to convince you to make this, it really is good! Baked apricots turn into the most beautiful soft jam, combined with crunchy almonds and moist cake, you really get an explosions of flavors and textures.
Apricot-almond upside-down cake
A wonderful late summer cake.
Recipe makes one 9-inch (23-cm) cake.
- 70g (5 tablespoons) butter
- 150g (3/4 cup) golden brown sugar
- 30g (1/3 cup) sliced almonds
- 7–8 large apricots; halved, pitted, sliced in wedges
- 285g (1 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 115g (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 160g (2/3 cup) white granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 160ml (2/3 cup) milk, room temperature
- Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) and prepare the topping:
In a heavy small saucepan melt butter over medium-low heat. Add brown sugar and stir until mixture begins to bubble, about 2-3 minutes.
- Pour mixture into a 9-inch (23-cm) cake pan and spread it over the bottom. Arrange apricot wedges around the pan in a circle, one wedge next to another, starting at the outer corner. Sprinkle sliced almonds in-between the apricots to fill the gaps.
- Make the batter:
Mix flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.
- In a separate bowl beat the butter until light and creamy (either with a mixer or by hand). Gradually beat in sugar, then eggs, one at a time. Lastly mix in vanilla.
- Alternately, in 3 additions, beat in dry ingredients and milk.
- Spoon batter over the apricots (and try to do it evenly, or your cake might crack in the middle which sadly happened to me this time). Bake cake until top is golden and a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 50 minutes (or more).
- ransfer pan to a rack and run a knife around the sides of the cake. Cool the cake for about 10 minutes.
- Place a plate over the pan and invert the cake onto it. Gently lift off pan.
Serve the cake warm as is, or with a scoop of ice cream and whipped cream or sprinkle with sugar.
Store any left over cake in the fridge, for up to 2-3 days, covered with plastic wrap. Although the cake tastes great warm, I think the taste is just as good when it’s cold. But if it’s been in the fridge for a while, I recommend you warm it up in the microwave before serving, as it does get a bit stiff.
Recipe adapted from Bon Appétit, June 1998