Maple-Peach Upside Down Cake With All Spice & Brandy Crème Fraîche
by Johnny Loua, Chef, Seattle, Washington
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 4 large ripe peaches, peeled, cored, and cut into quarters
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1⅓ cups sugar
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 10-inch round cake pan or 6 individual soufflé crocks. In a large saucepan, bring the maple syrup to a boil over high heat, then simmer over low heat until very thick and reduced to ¾ cup, about 20 minutes. Pour the thickened syrup into the cake pan. Arrange the peaches in the pan in 2 concentric circles, overlapping them slightly.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs with the buttermilk and vanilla. In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar at medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the dry and wet ingredients in 3 alternating batches until the batter is smooth; scrape down the sides of the bowl each time.
Pour the batter over the peaches and spread it in an even layer. Bake the cake for 1½ hours, until golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If using individual crocks, bake for about 30 to 35 minutes. Let the cake cool on a rack for 45 minutes.
Place a plate on top of the cake and invert the cake onto the plate; tap lightly to release the cake, then remove the pan. Let the cake cool slightly, then cut into wedges and serve with All Spice & Brandy Crème Fraîche (recipe follows).
All Spice & Brandy Crème Fraiche
- ½ cup brandy
- ½ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon all spice
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup crème fraiche
In a small saucepan, combine honey and brandy and let flame until all the alcohol cooks off. Add all spice and let the mixture cool. Meanwhile, whisk the heavy cream until soft peaks form, then fold into the cooled brandy mixture. Add crème fraîche and whisk well until incorporated. Refrigerate until ready to serve.