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Strawberry upside-down cake

(Karoline Boehm Goodnick)
By Karoline Boehm Goodnick
Globe Correspondent / July 1, 2009

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Serves 10

Who can resist bringing home an entire flat of ruby-colored strawberries fresh from the fields? Once cereal has been garnished, jams have been made, and the whole family has nibbled a few out of the bowl, you need a plan for the rest. Baking with strawberries is a great way to use up imperfect fruit. Fan sliced berries artistically in the bottom of a 9-inch layer cake pan. They’ll be the showpiece when the dessert is turned upside down after baking. Cool the cake before you do this. If it’s too hot, the juicy topping will slide off; too cold and it might stick. For a patriotic look, garnish with softly whipped cream and fresh blueberries.

BERRIES

4 tablespoons ( 1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon orange juice
3 pints strawberries, hulled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1. Set the oven at 325 degrees. Have on hand a 9-inch round layer cake pan.

2. In the pan, combine the butter, brown sugar, and orange juice. Stir well and spread evenly on the bottom. Layer sliced strawberries on top of brown sugar mixture, making several layers of concentric circles.

CAKE

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/3 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup orange juice
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 cup heavy cream, softly whipped with 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
1 pint fresh blueberries
1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and granulated sugar.

2. Scatter the chunks of butter over the flour and, using a pastry blender or two blunt knives, cut the butter into the flour until the butter pieces are the size of small peas.

3. In a small mixing bowl, whisk the yolks, orange juice, milk, and yogurt. Pour the liquids over the flour mixture. Use a wooden spoon to form a dough.

4. Drop the dough on the strawberries. Use a spatula to smooth the surface.

5. Bake the cake for 45 to 60 minutes or until it is golden brown and firm to the touch.

6. Transfer to a rack; cool for 20 minutes.

7. Invert a cake plate onto the cake pan. Turn them both over together. Serve warm, garnished with cream and blueberries.