Butter? Of course!
Almond Paste? Check.
Juicy, sticky, syrupy fruit? Oh mais oui!
Plum Upside-Down Cake adapted from Martha Stewart Living
If this isn't my favorite cake, it's close. Please make it and tell me you love it, too!
10 plums, pitted and quartered
6 tbl unsalted butter
9 tbl sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Melt butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add plums and cook 2 to 3 minutes, until coated with butter and shiny. Add sugar and cinnamon and cook , stirring frequently until soft, 10-15 minutes. Remove plums from pan and transfer to a baking sheet to cool. Reserve syrup.
In a buttered and floured 9" round cake pan, arrange plums in a decorative pattern. Return syrup to medium heat and boil until very thick. Immediately pour syrup over fruit and set aside to cool.
3/4 c flour
1 tsp b.powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 tbl coarse-ground cornmeal
6 tbl unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 c almond paste
3/4 c + 2 tbl sugar
3 lg eggs, separated, room temp.
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/2 c milk, room temp.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, b.powder, salt. Whisk in cornmeal.
Cream together butter and almond paste. Gradually add 3/4 c sugar and beat until creamy. Beat in yolks, followed by vanilla and almond extracts. Add dry ingredients alternately with milk, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Pour batter into another container, set aside, and scrub the mixing bowl to remove all traces of fat - swishing the bowl with vinegar for good measure.
In cleaned bowl, whip egg whites until foamy, starting at low speed and increasing to medium. Gradually sprinkle in 2 tablespoons sugar, increase mixer speed to medium high, and beat until soft peaks form. Fold 1/4 of the whipped whites to cake batter to loosen, then gently fold in the remaining whites, taking care that they don't deflate.
Carefully spread the batter over fruit and bake for about an hour, or until toothpick inserted in center of cake is clean when removed.
Cool cake in pan. When ready to serve, place over low heat for a minute, run a knife around the edges of the pan, and invert onto a plate. If any plums remain in the pan, carefully scrape them out and place on cake.