I’m a strange sort of person.
I love cake. I love baking cakes. But I do not like icing. At all.
So I usually make muffins instead of fancy cakes that need frosted, or I’ll make a loaf cake. However, warm weather in a central-AC-less apartment means I can’t bake a loaf cake for 45 minutes without spontaneously bursting into flames. But I wanted to bake SOMETHING. Then I remembered the existence of upside-down cakes.
I made a fig upside-down cake earlier this summer. It was tasty, but it wasn’t pretty and it wasn’t amazing. So I dabbled with other fruits. I wanted something summery but a bit exotic, and I had a new tin of cardamom pods begging to be used.
Then it hit me: peaches, raspberries, and cardamom work well together. Cardamom really reminds me of the smell of the Spice Bazaar in Istanbul, and we all know how I heart me some Istanbul.
I scoured the internet for a recipe that had few eggs (I only had 1 left in the fridge), and found Joy the Baker’s Strawberry Upside-Down Cake with Cardamom. It was just what I was looking for: simple and it didn’t need to bake forever. I made a few tweaks, so my cake was more of a round pound cake in texture and had fruit mixed in more than a caramelized layer at the top.
Clearly, you can substitute different fruits and spices to make your own favorite. Maybe cinnamon and pear or clove and orange. Oh, clove and orange sounds like a great holiday cake…
Peach Raspberry Cardamom Cake
Yield: 1 cake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30-35 minutes
Total Time: 50-55 minutes
A fruity, spicy cake that doesn't need frosting or a glaze. Just simple flavors with more spice than sweetness.
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (I used coconut oil)
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 small peaches, sliced
1 cup raspberries
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
2/3 cup sour cream (I used plain, nonfat yogurt)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Grease a round cake pan; an 8 inch or 9 inch work best. You can either arrange the fruit on the bottom or add some melted butter and sugar and then add the fruit if you want a more traditional upside-down cake.
In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients together (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cardamom). If you don't have cardamom powder but whole pods, you can take a rolling pin of back of a chef's knife to the pods to crack them open. Then throw some granulated sugar on a cutting board with the seeds and roll with a rolling pin to crush them a bit.
Using an electric stand mixer, cream the butter (or coconut oil) and brown sugar on medium for about 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and add the egg and vanilla extract. Beat for about 1 minute.
Scrape down the bowl and add the dry ingredients. Beat on low to just incorporate everything. Slowly add the sour cream (or yogurt) while mixing on low. Give the mixture a stir with a spatula.
Spoon the batter over the fruit and spread evenly. I threw in some more raspberries to have fruit on both the top and bottom. Bake for about 30-35 minutes.
Let cake cool for 10 minutes before running a knife around the edge of the cake and flipping the cake over onto a plate or cake stand.
Adapted from Joy the Baker