Saturday, April 07, 2007

Woodstove Cooking: Dutch Oven Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Revised

On January 29 I posted a recipe for Dutch Oven Pineapple Upside-Down Cake from my wood-burning stovetop collection. I've used that recipe several times, but have been concerned about the large quantity of margarine in the cake. So, I used my trusty Fannie Farmer cookbook to find an alternative. Here's my revised recipe using oil in the cake rather than margarine. It comes from Fannie's Quick Gold Cake recipe on page 826. The resulting cake was just as rich but with less fat.

Dutch Oven Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Revised

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.

1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
1 egg (or substitute) beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix liquid ingredients with the beaten egg.

1 1/8 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2/3 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 sugary liquid may ooze up. Bake for 35 minutes at 400 degrees if you are using a conventional oven.

I use a cast iron Dutch Oven on top of my KOZI wood-burning stove for baking. First, I place the pot and lid on top of the stove to heat. After I place the cake pan inside, I put hot rocks on top of the lid as an additional heating source. Replacing the rocks with hotter ones throughout baking keeps the temperature higher. I use a wire rack in the bottom on the Dutch Oven to keep the baking pan from burning on the bottom.

During the last half hour of baking, I put the tip of a wooden spoon under the lid to make a small crack. This lets the moisture out and allows for a little more browning. Baking it this way, it takes about an hour (depending on the heat of the fire). It always bubbles over a bit. When the top starts to brown, and a toothpick comes out clean, it is done. I like to serve it warm with whipped cream on top. Yum!! -- Margy

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