Soooo very pretty.  Glistening and scrumptious looking.  This apple cake is really delicious.  Full of lovely cinnamon scents and seasonal apple flavor it is a beauty for your holiday table.  I brought this cake to Amy’s family and they at it up. My family too.  Everyone loved the top (originally the bottom) that is full of brown sugar, maple syrup and butter (what is not to like!) Seriously good and not as hard to make as you would think.  Yes, you have to peel and slice 2 apples (but I did this even with my injured hand) and really beyond that, not too much work.  I’ve never made and upside-down cake before and I’m glad I finally did. I do think this is better warm – as it has a terrific shine for the first few hours after it comes out of the oven.  After that, it is still very tasty, but that sheen is missing.  Regardless, with vanilla bean ice cream and or freshly whipped cream, you’ve got a winner.  Enjoy-

*Walnuts are in the original recipe but I imagine they would be delicious if you are a nut fan.

apple upside-down cake (slightly adapted from Cake Keeper Cakes by Lauren Chattman):


6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 medium to large granny smith apples (peeled, cored and sliced thin)
2/3 cup light brown sugar (packed)
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 pinches kosher salt
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted, cooled and finely chopped


1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter, room temp
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk

If using nuts, toast, cool and chop.  Look to baking tips for more instruction.  Peel and slice your apples.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9 inch round cake pan and then dust with flour – tap out excess.

On medium high heat, melt  1 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet.  Add the sliced apples and cook until they begin to brown a bit and soften.  Stir frequently – this should take about 5 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

Melt and then heat the remaining butter (5 tablespoons) in a medium sized sauce pan over medium heat until the butter foams.  Lower to medium low and add the brown sugar, and whisk for about 2 minutes.  Scrape this mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly with a small spatula or back of a spoon.

Drizzle the maple syrup over the brown sugar and butter mixture.  If using nuts, sprinkle them on top of the syrup.  Now arrange the apple slices in concentric circles on top of the sugar mixture and set aside while you make the cake.

Cake – whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt and set aside.

With the paddle attachment of an electric mixer (or hand held) beat the butter and sugar on medium high speed until light and fluffy – about 4-5 minutes – be sure to scrape the bowl down 1-2 times during this.

On medium low speed, add the eggs one at a time.  Then add the vanilla and beat at high speed for about 2-3 minutes – again scraping down the bowl midway.

On the lowest speed, stir in about 1/3 or the flour mixture, followed by 1/2 of the milk, and repeat with the remaining flour and milk (ending with the flour).  Scrape down the bowl and then beat the batter on high speed for about 30 seconds.

Pour the batter over the apples – spreading gently to cover and smooth.

Bake until cake is golden and a toothpick comes out clean about 33-40 minutes.  Let the cake sit for 5 minutes.

Then – place a plate on top of the cake and hold tight with oven mitts – invert the hot cake onto the placte.

If any apples are loose, just pop them back into place.

Let cool for about 20 minutes and serve warm if you can – or at room temp.

This cake can be wrapped loosely at room temp and stored for about 2 days.

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