|The epitome of summertime deliciousness!|
Brad recently surprised me with a subscription to Food Network Magazine, and I love it. In their July/August 2012 issue, they featured a Farmers' Market Menu, which starred this Peach-Almond Upside-Down Cake as dessert. All of the juicy, marvelous peaches at the farmers' market lately has had me dreaming of peachy flavored goodness, so when I saw this recipe I made a mental note to try it.
That opportunity came about a week later when Brad's parent's invited us over for a steak dinner. Oh boy, does Brad's dad know how to make an awesome steak! We never EVER turn down dinner at their house. I had the baking bug that day, and the peaches were calling my name. So, I got to work making this cake to take to dinner for everyone to enjoy.
In fact, my father-in-law declared that this cake was one of his favorite desserts that I've EVER made...ever!
The cake itself is incredibly tender and moist. Plus, yummy little pieces of almond bits add such an incredible taste and texture, making this cake one you won't soon forget.
On top of all that goodness, lies a layer of caramelized sweetness, with beautiful peach slices arranged in pretty circles. This dessert is the absolute epitome of summertime deliciousness.
Bon Appetit, my friends! :)
Peach-Almond Upside-Down Cake
Adapted from: Food Network magazine, July/August 2012
Ingredients:1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 medium fresh peaches, pitted and cut into 6 wedges each
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole almonds
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon butter pecan or almond flavored extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
Vanilla ice cream, for serving (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter a 9-inch-round cake pan. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tbsp water and then add 3/4 cup sugar and cook, stirring occasionally, until smooth and deep golden brown, 8 to 11 minutes. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and tilt to coat the bottom. Arrange the peach wedges snugly in the bottom of the pan in a single layer, cutting to fit if needed.
(My Notes about the first step: When caramelizing the sugar mixture, stir occasionally, as the recipe states. After about 7 minutes, keep an even closer eye on the mixture. As soon as it turns a golden brown color and is a smooth consistency, remove it from the heat and pour into the cake pan. The mixture will burn quickly if not careful. During the caramelization process, the sugar mixture tends to start off pretty wet but then becomes dry right before it starts to change color. Don't be alarmed if the mixture hardens in the bottom of the cake pan. It will become gooey again during the baking process.)
Next, combine the flour, almonds, baking powder and salt in a food processor and pulse until the almonds are finely ground.
Beat the remaining 7 tablespoons butter and 3/4 cup sugar in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and almond extracts. Beat in the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the buttermilk and beginning and ending with the flour mixture; beat in each addition until just incorporated.
Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool 30 minutes. Invert onto a plate and let cool completely. Serve with ice cream.
Note: This cake is best the same day it's baked, still a little warm from the oven. Just be sure to let it cool for 30 minutes before inverting onto a plate.