I have a sensitivity to chemicals in food. So several years ago I started cooking from scratch – again. I say again because I was originally taught to cook from scratch. Growing up there was very little we ate that came from a box or a mix. Like many people, as an adult I fell for the “convenience” food marketing ploys. I was totally convinced I just didn’t have the time to cook from scratch anymore.
And then I started having reactions to chemicals in food. And I was forced to switch back to cooking from scratch. Know what I discovered? Those “convenience” foods are really not that convenient after all. This is especially true of cake mixes. Most cake mixes only replace 3 ingredients. Flour, sugar and flavorings. Sure they claim to replace a few more ingredients, such as carrot cakes. But have you ever compared the flavor of a boxed cake to that of one homemade, created with real ingredients? And to make it worse have you read the ingredients in most cake mixes? Yuck!
So here is a recipe to get you started. Its easy and delicious. And once you make it you are never going to want a pineapple cake made with a boxed mix again.
Easy Peasy Upside Down Pineapple Cake
(Vegetarian with Vegan suggestions included)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2 tablespoons butter (Vegan- substitute non-hydrogenated margarine)
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon water
1 8oz can pineapple slices, drained (can substitute pineapple pieces in a pinch)
Maraschino cherries (however many you want – the old recipes called for halving the cherries but I never do. Time management!)
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup granulated sugar (I use raw sugar)
2 teaspoons baking powder
2/3 cup milk (Vegan- substitute soy milk)
1/4 cup butter softened (Vegan – substitute non-hydrogenated margarine)
1 egg (Vegan- egg substitute – I use Bob’s Red Mill when I make this for my vegan friends)
1 teaspoon vanilla (don’t use the fake stuff! Ewww)
1. Melt the 2 tablespoons butter or margarine in a 9 inch baking pan. Just stick it in the oven for a minute or so but be careful to not burn it. Stir in the brown sugar and water. Arrange the pineapple and cherries in the pan. Set aside.
2. In a medium mixing bowl stir together flour, sugar and baking powder. Add milk, 1/4 cup butter or margarine, egg and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed till combined. Then beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Spoon batter in the pan. Don’t pour! Spoon. 🙂
3. Bake in the over at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes. Start checking the cake at 30 minutes. It is done when a wooden toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Invert onto a plate.
Go ahead and try it warm! You know you want to. Yum!