Cast Iron pans are a secret weapon. Yes, they are heavy enough that they could actually be used as a weapon, but that’s not what I am talking about. I love my cast iron pan, but I hardly ever use it! The problem is, because I don’t use it very much, whenever I go to use it – I usually have to re-season it. It is not that hard, but kind of a pain. It is always completely worth it though – particularly for baking. The one thing I have not done yet is use my cast iron pan to bake something on the Big Green Egg…now we’re talking.
The other week I signed up to bring dessert for book club. I decided that I would make two desserts – one for the kids, and one for the adults. What did I make for the kids? Of course these…but I wanted to do something completely different for the adults. Something that was easy, not too heavy, but that looked appetizing enough for everyone to try it. I was so happy when I found this recipe in Bon Appetit, and it called for a cast iron pan. It had been a while since I baked on my cast iron pan, and it was time.
It was a little risky to make this when we were trying to think spring, but I think I pulled it off. The apples really made this dish – the cake had such an intense flavor that the apples offset it nicely. Most of the Moms had a taste, and many of the kids did too. Now, all I have to do is make this on the Egg to give it a nice smoky flavor…now that would be something else.
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 cup mild-flavored (light) molasses
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons grated peeled ginger
- 1/2 cup sugar, divided
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 3-4 Honeycrisp or Pink Lady apples, (about 2 pounds), peeled
Place a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 350°. Melt butter in a 10-inch (as measured across the bottom) cast-iron or other ovenproof skillet; set aside. Whisk flour, salt, cinnamon, baking soda, and baking powder in a medium bowl.
Whisk molasses, egg, ginger, and 1/4 cup sugar in a large bowl. Whisk in sour cream, then milk. Gradually whisk in dry ingredients, then 3 tablespoons melted butter from skillet. Set aside.
Place 1 apple on a work surface stem up. Cut a large piece of apple from 1 side, leaving core behind. Rotate apple and repeat twice for a total of 3 large pieces (a triangular core will remain). Repeat with remaining apples.
Add remaining 1/4 cup sugar to butter in skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until sugar begins to caramelize, 2-3 minutes. Add apples; stir to coat. Cook apples rounded sides down for 3 minutes, then turn over and cook flat sides down until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes longer. Space apples evenly in skillet flat side down and pour cake batter over.
Transfer skillet to oven. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 30-40 minutes.
Let cake cool in skillet for 10 minutes, then carefully invert onto a plate. Serve cake warm or at room temperature.
For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, please click here: Apple Mollases Upside Down Cake
10 thoughts on “Apple-Molasses Upside-Down Cake”
Wowww, i’ve never seen anything like this before but it sure does look good!
Can you imagine how awesome this would be in the egg?! Oh my goodness. I’m salivating just thinking of it! And the skillet is genius. I need to use mine more too. :)
When will you get an egg?
Oh yum, this looks and sounds so delicious! Thank you for the recipe!
Thanks Rosie! I hope you make it for yourself!
That looks so delicious, I want to make it… but I then pose the question – can I use a normal pan? Because although I own one, it’s quite small and shallow :) You’ve mentioned using a heatproof skillet, but I’m thinking along the lines of a normal baking pan… What do you reckon, could I pull it off with one of those?
Yes, I think using a baking pan would be fine, although you wouldn’t get that nice caramelization on the top.
I think it reminds me a little like a French tartin. Beautiful and l love the addition of the rich molasses.
Yes, exactly!! I am definitely partial to all things French…
Hi Dawn, today I’m collecting cake recipes. Please drop me a line on firstname.lastname@example.org if you are ok with me linking to your post in my blog (Carole’s Chatter). Cheers