Ok, I’ll admit it…I have a cherry addiction. It’s true. Now that I live in Washington, how can I not take advantage of the amazing cherries I see every week at the farmers market?! Not only are they delicious, but they have many health benefits. Cherries contain red pigment antioxidants called anthocyanins, which have been shown to reduce pain and inflammation. Studies also show a link to lower cholesterol, lower triglyceride levels, reduced heart disease and decreased risk for diabetes. Considering how many cherries I currently eat (and intend to eat in the coming months) I should really invest in a cherry pitter.
As with many fruits and veggies, I often prefer to eat them in their raw state, however…this cake ain’t no joke. For someone who is extremely critical of her food, I must say, I LOVE THIS CAKE. So much so, that I snuck a few slices for a late night snack. Yep. If you like cherries, you should give this a try. It’s also a wonderfully beautiful looking cake once you flip it over to reveal a layer of delicious glazed cherries. As per my husband, it makes for a great breakfast treat.
I had a wonderful afternoon of cake baking, stormy weather and old-timey music. For some reason, Fats Waller seemed to fit my mood while making this retro upside down cake (with a couple of twists).
Crumb Topping Ingredients:
3/4 cup raw walnuts
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup soy butter, chilled and cubed
14 ounces of fresh cherries (I used a mix of Bing and Rainier), pitted and halved
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup soy butter
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp arrowroot powder
3 tbsp almond milk
1 cup vanilla soy yogurt
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
3 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp lemon zest
First make the crumb topping, which will actually be on the bottom of the cake once it’s flipped over after baking. Combine all of the ingredients (except for the soy butter) in a food processor and pulse until fine. Add the soy butter, a few cubes at a time, pulsing between additions. Pulse until the mixture is crumbly. Transfer to a bowl, cover and stick in the fridge until ready to use.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9-inch springform cake pan. Set the cake pan over a piece of aluminum foil and fold up along the sides. This will keep the juices from the cherries from dripping out and burning in the oven.
Melt the other 1/4 cup of soy butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Once melted, add the 3/4 cup brown sugar and whisk to combine. Cook for about 5 minutes, whisking often.
Pour the melted butter and sugar into the cake pan and spread evenly on the bottom.
Arrange the cherries, cut-side down, on the bottom of the cake pan, on top of the butter sugar mixture. If you have extra cherries, it’s ok to layer more on top of the first layer.
In a large bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and sea salt. In a separate smaller bowl, combine the arrowroot powder with 1 tbsp of almond milk. Stir to combine and dissolve the arrowroot. Add the Soy yogurt, remaining 2 tbsp of almond milk, maple syrup, vanilla and almond extracts, and whisk to combine. Add the canola oil and lemon zest, and whisk again to combine. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and fold together using a spatula. Don’t over mix.
Pour the cake batter over top of the cherries in the cake pan, spreading evenly. Top the cake with an even layer of the crumble topping.
Bake for about 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for about 15-20 minutes before inverting. To invert, run a knife under hot water then wipe dry. Run the knife along the edge of the pan to make sure the cake pops out clean. Press a plate onto the top of the cake and quickly flip the cake over so that the top is now upside down on the plate. Release the springform.