Sweet, crunchy apples, tangy cranberries, luscious pumpkin, savory soups, heartwarming stews, firey chili's ~ all tastes of fall that will soon be upon us with crisp days and crunchy leaves. I love fall for many reasons, but one of the biggest is the foods. So comforting and wonderful to come from a crisp walk into a steamy kitchen full of the smells of fall cooking. This year, I will be sharing recipe's with you, good or bad, once a week. Many of them will be new-to-me recipe's, since I love to experiment and am always trying something new.
Yesterday, I decided to pull some apples out of the freezer that I had chopped and frozen, and I actually still had a bag of local cranberries frozen from last fall. Time to use them! The perfect recipe came in my latest Better Homes and Gardens magazine (October 2009), changed up a little to accommodate my frozen apples and cranberries.
Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cornmeal Cake (just the name makes my taste buds water!)
6 Tbsp. butter
4 medium apples, peeled, cored, and sliced (here's where I used my frozen apples. I had more than what 4 would yield, but I used them all anyway)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tbsp. milk
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup dried cranberries (again, I used whole frozen and, I love cranberries, so I used a full cup instead of a 1/3, plus I was using more apples than the recipe calls for so I figured it could stand more cranberries as well.)
3/4 cup all - purpose flour
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup cornmeal
1 cup hot water
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a 10-inch oven-going skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add apples; cook and stir 5 minutes or until tender. (because I was using whole frozen cranberries, I added them at this point as well. If you are using dried, follow directions) Remove from skillet. In same skillet combine remaining butter and brown sugar. Cook and stir over medium heat until butter melts. Bring to boiling. Remove from heat. Stir in milk. Sprinkle with pecans and dried cranberries. Arrange apple slices on top.
2) In bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In medium bowl, combine cornmeal, water, and 1/4 cup butter. Stir in eggs and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture just until combined. Pour over apples.
3) Bake 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Invert; serve warm.
Mine didn't turn out as pretty as the one in the magazine picture, but I attribute that to using more apples and using frozen. They just aren't as pretty. Using more apples and cranberries, the cake itself didn't peek through, but it was still delicious. Served warm with a scoop of vanilla caramel ice cream is even better!
I'd love to hear how yours turned out if you decide to make it. Don't forget to come back and let me know.