What Barbara and I have most in common is that we love having people over and besides enjoying sharing food and wine, most of all we both love the process, planning, and preparing the meal.
Barb has been writing for over 16 years and apart from her lovely blog, she has also been running a web development business since 1995. For neo-bloggers like me, Barb has written a lot about her experience on building a successful blog. There are easy, simple tips that go a long way.
Barb has baked a lovely upside down cherry cake for me. And before I let her take over, I’d like to thank her for being there and unconditionally supportive when I was redesigning my blog.
One of my most favorite desserts in this world is pineapple upside down cake. There is something about that combination of fruit with brown sugar and butter that transports it to another place altogether. So when I saw a recipe in a recent issue of Bon Appetit for an Blackberry Buttermilk Cake my interest was piqued. No problem that I didn’t have blackberries; I was determined…and transporting was on my mind as this particular baked good was going to be a guest post for someone else and I wanted it to be something spectacular, something we both would just love.
Anuradha and I have been communicating for some time on Twitter; I even held her hand a bit when she made the big move to a hosted WordPress site and though she claims novice capabilities, I think her work in the baking realm is stellar. That she should would invite a Denverite, you know a ‘high altituder’ to do a guest post on baking was a real leap of faith as there is always a higher risk of failure in our baking results when dealing with less oxygen, leavening and the possibility of a big sink hole! Both of us participate in @abbydodge’s #baketogether event each month too; so you know, we hang in the same circles…if you can forget I live in Colorado and she in India!
I started thinking about what to do a couple of weeks ago when I was actually supposed to guest post for Anuradha last Thursday. I had a plan. I was going to revise one of my favorites, a lemon bar recipe I’ve made for 3 decades and do a take on them but with raspberries. Not with raspberries in them, no, I wanted the base to be a red raspberry one. The end result tasted fine but I just could not get over that sort of cloudy pink color that turned out…not at all as I had imagined. So my sweet friend gave me a reprieve until this week. Thank you, An!
The notion of an upside down cake seemed to make such sense as I pondered what to do next. Any visible sinking would be magically disguised when the top would become the bottom and I was sold. Another few minor revisions and the end result was a cake that reminded me of pound cake with a slight orange twist and, or course, the brown sugar glazed berries on top. Yummalicious to be exact.
It was perfect with coffee…and if I had been smart enough to pick up some whipping cream; that would have been a plus…enjoy!
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan and parchment
- 2⅓ cups cake flour (sifted, then measured) plus more for pan
- 3 cups pitted fresh sweet cherries
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp melted butter
- 1⅓ cups sugar
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1½ teaspoons finely grated orange zest
- juice of one orange
- 1 cup well-shaken buttermilk
- Powdered sugar (for dusting)
- Position a rack in middle of oven and preheat to 350F.
- Butter a springform pan; line bottom with a round of parchment paper. Butter parchment. Dust with flour; tap out excess.
- Using a piece of aluminum foil, wrap the bottom of the the springform pan tightly with the foil to avoid having melted butter dripping in your oven.
- Arrange berries in a single layer in bottom of pan; sprinkle evenly with ¼ cup sugar.
- Drizzle with the two tablespoons of melted butter.
- Sift 2⅓ cups flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda into a medium bowl; set aside. Using an electric mixer, beat ¾ cup butter and remaining 1⅓ cups sugar in a large bowl at medium-high speed, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl, until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Beat in vanilla, zest and orange juice. Reduce speed to low; beat in flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with flour mixture and beating just until incorporated.
- Pour batter over cherries in pan; smooth top.
- Bake until cake is golden brown and cake bounces back when pressed gently with fingertip, about 1 hour for a 9″ pan and about 45 minutes for a 10″ pan. Test for doneness (see Notes).
- Let cool in pan set on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then run a thin, sharp knife around the edge of the pan to loosen. Remove pan sides.
- Invert cake onto rack and remove pan bottom; peel off parchment. Dust top generously with powdered sugar and let cool completely.