Sunday, 9 August 2009

Upside-down berry cake

As much as I don’t like using frozen fruit, I did for this cake as my local supermarket simply didn’t have the selection of berries I wanted to use (raspberries, blackberries, redcurrants, blueberries and blackcurrants). This sort of cake relies on a nice mix of tart and sweet berries to create interest!

The upside down nature of the cake means that the fruit ends up looking like an intricate mosaic:

The recipe said to use 2 tablespoons of golden syrup, I think next time I’d use more as it didn’t create the ‘ooze’ into the cake I was hoping for. It’s a particular weakness of mine in either cake or steamed puddings when golden syrup oozes into the sponge making it golden, sweet and juicy.

For the first time ever, you will notice that I say the vanilla is optional in the recipe. This is as a result of a rather sticky moment when the CCBF (Caked Crusader’s Boyfriend) declared that he preferred his sponge au natural i.e. vanilla free. All relationships are tested from time to time and this was the first major test of ours. I blanched then felt panicky and clammy...but I think I’m over it now. Deep breaths, deep breaths, deep breaths...think happy la la, dancing through a field of vanilla......

Clotted cream is a perfect accompaniment for a cake like this and compliments the tart berries beautifully.


200g unsalted butter, at room temperature
200g golden caster sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract (optional)
4 eggs
225g self raising flour
25g ground almonds
200g mixed berries (either fresh or frozen)
2 -4 tablespoons golden syrup

To serve: ice cream or clotted cream

How to make:

- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.

- Line the bottom of a 20cm round springform tin with baking paper.

- Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Do not skimp on this stage as it’s the key to a lovely sponge.

- Gradually beat in the eggs, adding a little of the flour if it starts to curdle.

- Beat in the vanilla extract.

- Fold in the flour and ground almonds.

- If the batter is too stiff i.e. not dropping consistency, add a dash of milk – I didn’t need to.

- Arrange the berries in the base of the tin.

- Spoon over the golden syrup.

- Spoon the cake batter over the berries – be careful so as not to disturb them.

- Bake for approximately 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Mine took a little longer at 1 hour 15 minutes.

- Cool in the tin, until the tin is cold enough for you to handle.

- Tip the cake out onto a plate so the bottom (i.e. the berries) are now the top.

- Serve as desired – I served with a choice of ice cream or clotted cream.

- Bask in glory at the wonderful thing you have made.

- Eat.


Joy said...

Just beautiful! (I want some!)

Anonymous said...

this is in the oven as i type!! i have just made it with my daughters!!!

C said...

Upside down cakes are definitely the way forward!!! At least yours was deliberate!

It looks really good though - I love mixed summer fruit berries, sweet and tart and I bet the cake was great too.

Maria♥ said...

Wow this looks gorgeous and the sponge is so fluffy!


♥Rosie♥ said...

Just look at that beautiful colour from the berries!! Oh gosh this is one awesome cake C.C.

morri said...

I made this cake in a desperate attempt to make use of the last of this season's berries. I haven't really had much luck with upside-down cakes until now - I once tried a recipe for upside-down rhubarb and it ended up in a disaster.

But this? It's home baking at its homeliest. Solid, comforting cake topped with a layer of slightly tart berries carmelised to perfection. Yummy yummy.

One warning, though. I used a round springform tin and lined the bottom with baking paper, like the recipe suggests. I repeat: I lined the bottom only. Pardon the dodgy expression, but once I put the cake in the oven, the juices really started to flow. A spoonful after spoonful of boiling fruit juice started leaking out of the tin, and then proceeded to boil and carbonise at the bottom of the oven (I had to scrub it clean afterwards. Not fun). So, based on this experience, I strongly advise lining the whole tin with paper, sides and everything.