Birthday cakes can come in all shapes and sizes and can range from something simple to quite elaborate. For my Birthday this year I wanted to make something that we could eat as a dessert. Pears are in season at the moment and I absolutely love bosc pears. They have a slight crunch that gives way to their sweet juicy inner flesh as you bite into them. They also hold their shape extremely well as they cook so they are great to use if you are trying to create a pattern like you do when making an upside down cake.
The first upside down cake I remember making was a pineapple one that I made when I was about twelve years old. I loved the way it looked so pretty once it was turned out of the tin. It was completely different from making other cakes because you really aren’t sure how the top will look until the baking is finished.
When I found this recipe that combined one of my favourite fruits with the excitement and anticipation of seeing how it would look when it came out of the tin, I couldn’t resist. I hope you enjoy making this as a dessert or a cake or maybe even for a Birthday.
upside down caramel cake – (recipe from The Sydney Morning Herald – adapted by Fiona at Food 4 Thought)
serves 10 – 12
My tips/alterations: *When making caramel be sure not to stir it once the sugar has dissolved. This will cause the sugar to crystallise. The best method is to swirl the pan. Don’t over caramelise the sugar when making it for this recipe as it will set too hard when the cake is cooked. *I didn’t have an orange so I just used the zest of a Meyer lemon. It has a sweeter flavour than other lemons so worked very well. *I used a fan forced oven and this cake cooked in 30 minutes.
ease: 7/10. Caramel can be a little tricky, the rest is simple.
prep time: 15mins. If you cut the pears and make the batter while the caramel is cooking.
cooking time: 30mins.
taste: 8/10. We ate this warm, served with a dollop of cream. G rated this 4/5 and said it wasn’t really a stand out. I loved it. The pears were suitable soft, the caramel sticky and partially absorbed into the top of the cake and the cake itself was spongy and light. I am not really sure what else you could ask for. Luckily this was my birthday cake so I was the one who was supposed to enjoy it the most. 🙂
would I make it again: Yes. As a dessert for friends, or as a birthday cake.
Upside down caramel pear cake  – Recipe from Cuisine.com.au