Monday, January 29, 2007

Woodstove Cooking: Dutch Oven Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Three’s a charm. You’ve heard about my frying pan and hot rocks oven, and my converted toaster oven. I’ve wanted a cast iron Dutch Oven, but the cost kept me away. One day while walking through Canadian Tire I found one for $35.00.

Cured dutch oven with no legs for woodstove cooking.
It was legless (necessary for my stovetop cooking) with a flat, recessed lid to hold my hot rocks. I cured it in the condo oven (a story in itself).

First, I place the pot and lid on top of my KOZI wood burning stove to heat. I also heat rocks to go on top of the lid as an additional heating source. Rotating hot rocks throughout baking keeps the temperature higher. I use a wire rack in the bottom to keep baking pans from burning on the bottom. You can cook directly in a Dutch Oven, but I haven’t tried it that way yet. The first thing I made in my Dutch Oven was Pineapple Upside-Down Cake.

Dutch Oven Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Arrange 4-5 slices of canned pineapple in one layer in a greased 8” round cake pan that is at least 1” deep.

3 tablespoons margarine
¾ cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup pineapple juice
Dash nutmeg

Melt margarine on low heat. Add sugar and heat until blended. Add pineapple juice and heat until everything is dissolved. Add nutmeg. Pour over pineapple.

6 tablespoons margarine
2/3 cup milk
1 egg (or substitute)

Melt margarine on low heat, let cool slightly. Mix with milk and beaten egg.

1 ½ cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup sugar

Mix flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in a bowl. Add wet ingredients and stir until blended. It will be thick. Spoon the cake mixture over the pineapple and smooth the top. Some of the liquid may ooze up. Bake for 35 minutes at 400 degrees in a conventional oven. 

It took about an hour in my wood stovetop Dutch Oven. It always bubbles over, so be prepared. When the top starts to brown, and a toothpick comes out clean, it is done. This is a really rich and heavy cake, but superb warm with whipped cream on top. -- Margy

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