Sunday, September 16, 2007

Since we're on the subject of food…

Here's one of my favorite desert recipes that my mom used to make quite often. The recipe I have is in my Grandmother's handwriting so its one of those old-fashion deserts that doesn't call for exotic ingredients and is pretty hearty. This makes four (american-sized) servings.

Chocolate Upside-Down Cake
Sift together (ok - how many of you have a sifter?)
1 cup flour (could use other multi-grain flour but would need to make adjustment to quantity)
3/4 cup sugar
2 T cocoa
1/2 t salt (I left out)
2 t Baking Powder
- - - - - -
1 t vanilla (preferable the good mexican vanilla that your friends brings back from their vacations!)
1/2 cup milk (I used 1/4 c low-fat vanilla flavored soy and 1/4 low-fat milk - next time I might use all soy milk)
1/2 cup chopped nuts (I left these out but my mom would sometimes use walnuts)
(you could add different spices to change the taste. I think some fresh mint or cinnamon might be pretty good. It might also be interesting if you added a small handful of miniature marshmellows.)

Melt 2 T shortening (I used canola oil) in pan you are going to bake it in. Add dry ingredients and then add wet ingredients and mix it all up. Sprinkle over the batter the following:

1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 T cocoa

and then pour 1 cup boiling water (this makes the chocolate syrup in the bottom of the pan) over all and put in 325 ° oven for 45 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped topping.

This desert has the tendency to puff up and then fall as it cools. I suggest using a pan a little larger than you think you might need – one with high sides. Once my mom found the right baking pan that forever became known as the chocolate upside-down cake pan. Whenever you saw it out on the counter you knew what would be for desert after dinner!

I also had a recipe for a carmel upside-down cake which I thought I would really like because I would normally choose carmel over chocolate but it just doesn't taste as good. I looked for the recipe but I think I already pulled it from my bulging recipe box because it wasn't something that I'd make again.

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