Chef John's Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pineapple juice
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum (optional)
  • 1/2 small fresh pineapple - peeled, cored, and sliced
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup cold milk

Instructions

1_ Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

2_ Melt 1/4 cup butter in a 12-inch cast iron skillet over medium-low heat. Stir in brown sugar, pineapple juice, and dark rum. Cook over medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture is bubbling, about 5 minutes.

3_ Remove from heat and spread pineapple slices in a layer over the brown sugar mixture, completely covering the mixture. Set skillet aside.

4_ Melt 1/2 cup butter in small skillet over low heat until the butter begins to brown and release a nutty fragrance, about 5 minutes. Watch carefully, butter burns easily. Remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes.

5_ Whisk together flour, cardamom, salt, baking powder, and white sugar in a large bowl. Whisk in egg and cold milk until just combined. Pour in melted butter and stir to mix thoroughly.

6_ Pour batter over the pineapple slices in the skillet; spread evenly to cover.


7_ Bake in preheated oven until the cake begins to bubble around the edges, the top is browned, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool in the skillet for 10 minutes.

8_ Loosen the cake from the skillet by running a knife around the inside edge of the cake. Invert a large plate over the top of the skillet and flip over, releasing the cake to show the pineapple slices on top.

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