September marks the transitional point between seasons and is my absolute favourite time in the kitchen. Stone fruit and berries are in abundance, and I love to pair both with Autumnal flavours to mark the seasonal shift. This nectarine upside down cake with salted caramel is the best of both worlds: fruit, ripe with sunshine and vanilla-scented sponge and the depth of warming salted caramel. To make the cake, you will need:
For the caramel
120g caster sugar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 tbsp water
For the cake
125g caster sugar
210g plain flour
2 nectarines, chopped into long slices
1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
Sea salt, for sprinkling.
Preheat the oven to 375F/ 190C/ Fan 170C. Grease and line a square baking tin. Combine the sugar, 1/2 tsp sea salt and 1 1/2 tbsp water in a medium saucepan and stir until the mixture looks like wet sand. Over a medium-high heat, gently swirl occasionally but don’t stir, until the mixture is light amber in colour – around 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and pour quickly into the prepared tin (work fast as it solidifies quickly). Arrange the nectarine over the caramel in neat rows and set the tin aside.
Beat the butter and sugar in a mixer on a medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition, then add in the vanilla.
Reduce the mixer speed and alternately add the flour and yoghurt and mix until just incorporated.
Pour the batter over the nectarines and spread evenly. Bake for around 50 minutes, until the cake is golden and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean (if it browns too quickly, cover loosely with foil).
Sit for 15 minutes to cool, then invert onto a dish and leave to cool completely. Cut into slices, sprinkle with sea salt and serve.
What are you baking this weekend?
Recipe via the Food Network. Click here for more stone fruit recipes.