Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Upside Down Mini Apple Cakes

There are usually at least a few recipes that people remember with happy thoughts from when they were young. I remember recipes like my grandmothers vanilla sauce but I also have happy food memories. When I would come home from school my mom would make the little plates of snacks themed for the holiday. My favorite was St. Patrick's Day. I would have something like celery with green tinted ranch dressing, maybe pickles, maybe green tinted milk, or whatever my mom could come up with that would be green.

Food provides a warm and happy memory for most people. There's a reason that Food Network had (has?) the show The Best Food I Ever Ate, because people love food. I've been a vegetarian for years but when I got married, for a brief moment in time (several months before and after) I ate beef. My husband refers to this time as "false advertising" of course because he prefers as many meats on a plate as possible and now I won't eat any.

Where I was going with this, is that of all the foods I've eaten, there are two that stand out in my mind. One of them was a beef burger (gasp!). It was our honeymoon and we were staying in a super nice hotel. We ordered room service and picked out a kobe burger. That was the best burger ever! (says the vegetarian). The other food was basil mashed potatoes at a local French restaurant. That was probably 6 years ago...I will never forget those delicious, amazing potatoes. I loved them! 

What is sad about this recipe is that after I made them and plated them up on the counter for pictures, I had to walk away for a minute (this is what having a 4 month old means). My four year old went into the kitchen for something and left the gate open accidentally and so one of our dogs went into the kitchen and ate four of them, right off the counter :(. So sad. At least I had already taken a few pictures. That's why there's only three in most of the pictures. Those were up higher on a toaster oven cooling. I should have locked the gate...

The guilty one

I really love old recipes and old cookbooks. The recipes are sometimes made with interesting ingredients or have fun names. I used to go to library sales and buy the used cookbooks because I could pick them up for a few dollars and those cookbooks aren't going to be produced again. I found a version of this apple cake in one of my old cookbooks from 1968. I wasn't even born when this cookbook was printed, which just makes it that much better to me! (Note the coupons in the picture below, those were in the cookbook and are from 1979).

A friend requested an apple cake that is similar to a pineapple upside down cake, he used to have it when he was younger. I found this recipe and turned it into cupcakes.  He hasn't tried them yet, but I hope that these are similar to what he remembers. I think they're delicious and I hope you do too! Happy Baking!

Upside Down Mini Apple Cakes
Makes 9

- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 granny smith apple, sliced into ⅛” slices, then halved
- ½ teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ cup butter, unsalted, softened
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 whole eggs
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 teaspoon milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 9 cups of a 12 cup muffin pan. In a small bowl stir together the ¼ cup sugar, cinnamon, apple slices, and lemon juice.
2. Blend the butter and ½ cup sugar in a mixer until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time mixing in between each addition. Sift the flour, baking powder, and baking soda into a small bowl.
3. Add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and blend. Stir in the sour cream, milk, and vanilla extract until smooth. Stir in the rest of the flour mixture until smooth.
4. Evenly divide the apple pieces between the 9 muffin cups in a decorative pattern, if desired. Spoon ½-1 teaspoon of the syrup from the apple bowl into each muffin cup with the apples. Evenly divide the batter between the 9 cups, filling them about ⅘ full.
5. Bake for 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Run a knife around the edges and flip onto a wire rack to cool. 

Recipe adapted from A World of Baking (pictured above)

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