Tuesday, September 14, 2010

TWD: Cranberry Upside Downer


One of my mother's favorite sayings has always been "everything in moderation." While it induced major eye rolls when I was in high school (but then, what didn't?) something about that message sunk in, because now that I am indisputably an adult, I am extreme in my moderation. I sleep not too much, not too little. I drink a glass or two of wine a week. I will never be a workaholic. I get regular, non-compulsive exercise. I try to eat healthy most of the time, with all of the food groups represented. My midlife crisis car will probably be a Maxima. I have a strong preference for those glorious, moderate seasons, spring and fall (and really want to live somewhere where it is spring and fall all the time -- suggestions?) and tend to get winter/summer fatigue in a hurry. Yup, I am pretty much a moderate by every measure except for Cranberry Upside-Downer consumption, as evidenced by the fact that I ate 90% of this by myself in hourly, 1/8th inch slice increments over the course of a couple of days. And what can I say? -- extreme behavior never tasted so good!

I bought a bunch of cranberries during cranberry season last year, and they've been taking up awkward space in my freezer ever since. I was thrilled to get to use them a little bit earlier than planned; with more room in the freezer and an upside down cake on the counter, everybody wins! This was an easy cake to make. Melt some butter and sugar on the stovetop, mix in walnuts and cranberries, and spread the mixture into an 8" round pan:



Top with batter and bake.

This came out of the pan nicely and made for a festive presentation. I l-l-l-loved this cake! It has the perfect texture, and the tart cranberries and the cinnamon cake make for a heavenly combination. I We treated this as a breakfast/snack cake, but it would totally work as a true dessert with ice cream or whipped cream. David, who luckily got the first slice before I ate the rest of it, noted that while he is not usually a cranberry fan or an upside down cake fan (Really? Who thinks about upside down cakes as a distinct genre of cake, and then forms an opinion about whether to be a fan or not? Apparently my husband does.), he thought the cake was delicious. I have no idea what we are doing for Thanksgiving this year, but if I am anywhere near an oven and willing eaters -- strike that, I don't need the willing eaters; I can handle this baby myself -- I am making this cake.

Sabrina of Superflous chose this Upside Downer, and you can find her post here. Sabrina, awesome pick!

14 comments:

Di said...

It's probably a good thing that I had a number of other people in the house willing to eat this cake, because I could have easily polished it off on my own. =) And I can attest to the fact that it's quite tasty with vanilla ice cream.

Katrina said...

That is some serious cranberry upside-downer lovin' there! Glad you liked it so much! I made spiced peach, which was also good, but can't wait to make it during the holidays with cranberries!

jillbert said...

I skipped this one and now I'm dying for cranberries, especially after reading about how much you loved this cake!

Jess said...

Just think of all the antioxidants. I think I would have demolished this one too, had I made it (although I've made it before and I think that's what I did with it). The cake looks great.

Peggy said...

Cathy it looks delicious. Glad you made this one. We could have brought them to work and secretly pigged out in the breakroom! Chan and I loved this one and I am going to make it again. It was so easy too.

Beth said...

Sounds like the kind of cake I could eat by myself, too. With all the wonderful fruit variations I've seen, I have to give this recipe a try.

spike. said...

moderation is not appropriate for a cake like this. I agree, it must make a thanksgiving appearance!

Bridgett said...

I loved this cake when I made it a while back and your photo makes it all the more tempting...in moderation of course ;)

Kayte said...

I had nary a cranberry taking up awkward space in my freezer, and neither did anyone else in the 25 mile radius of this place, so I had to resort to peaches and raspberries, which was not a bad resort, trust me. I am going to try the cranberry version when they finally hit the markets here as it looks way too good not to give it the due it deserves. Yours looks really wonderful, and that linen thing you do just makes it look even more so. Great job. Moderation? I will need to think a bit to decide where I fit into that category!

Anonymous said...

Looks delicous! I can't wait to try this recipe. By the way, San Francisco = beautiful fall/spring weather all year round :) If I ever strike it rich I am moving there immediately!

Mary Ann said...

I loved this cake so much too, that I will make it again and probably consume way too much of it! The cranberries have to count for something though, right?
It looks awesome, Cathy.

Nancy/n.o.e said...

No matter how you try to frame it otherwise, your process of demolishing this cake was itself moderate. The telling testimony? That you ate it over a couple of days. True extreme behavior would have polished that baby off in an afternoon at most! I'm glad you liked it, though, it is stunning (and so well-photographed too). Next time I bake this, I'm throwing moderation to the wind and doubling the cranberry/nut topping.

The Blonde Duck said...

I wish I was moderate. I'm totally extreme--black and white.

TeaLady said...

This was an unexpected treat. The cake was great underneath and we kept going back for more too. Good thing I just made a little one.

 
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