Tomato Upside Down Cake
How are you enjoying the tomato recipes this month so far? After making tomato jam a few weeks ago, I knew tomatoes would make an excellent and unexpected dessert. I wanted the tomatoes to shine and get that syrupy texture like in the jam. An upside down cake came to mind. I’ve always loved pineapple upside down cakes with the gooey topping and crusty edges. It seemed like an intriguing way to use tomatoes in a dessert and also display them in a pretty pattern. I made it for our Thursday game night crew and before anyone took a bite I got some raised eyebrows in the room.
So let’s get down to this cake (see what I did there, he he)!
First preheat the oven to 350°.
You’ll start by making the bottom tomato and caramel part first. Melt six tablespoons of the butter in a 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat until it’s melted. If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, you can use another pan, you’ll just have to pour the caramel and arrange the tomatoes in a cake pan that can go in the oven.
Once the butter is melted, stir in the brown sugar.
Cook the mixture until it bubbles and the sugar is mostly dissolved. This should take about four minutes.
Take your pan off the heat and if you’re using a cast iron skillet, layer the tomatoes over the caramel creating a nice design. We had yellow, orange, and red tomatoes in the garden so I alternated the colors. Do whatever you think looks nice. :). If you’re not using a cast iron skillet, pour the caramel in a cake pan and arrange the tomatoes on top.
Now onto the cake batter. First you’ll mix together the flour, baking powder and salt and set that aside. Next, cream together the rest of the butter and the granulated sugar until it’s light and fluffy in a mixer with the whisk attachment.
You’ll whisk in the eggs one a time.
Add the vanilla extract with the last egg. Now add half of the flour mixture and mix.
Then mix in the milk and finally add in the rest of the flour and whisk just until it’s combined.
Pour the batter over the tomatoes in the pan and bake in the oven for about forty minutes.
The cake is done when a toothpick comes out clean.
After ten minutes, run a knife around the edge of the pan and then put your serving plate on top of the pan. Clasp the bottom of the pan with potholders and the plate with your thumbs and flip it over. This part can seem scary but if you do it with confidence in one swift motion you won’t have any problems! The cake should plop onto your plate and you’ll see the pretty design you made.
Slice the cake and serve with whipped cream on top.
This cake is gooey on the top from the caramel and the tomatoes get nice and soft. The edges also get slightly crispy and chewy, which is one of my favorite parts! It’s not too sweet since you’re using tomatoes instead of another fruit but it still feels like a dessert.
Are there other desserts you’ve tried featuring tomatoes? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter softened, divided
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 4-5 medium tomatoes, sliced into 1/8" rounds
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Melt six tablespoons of the butter in a 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat until melted.
- Stir in the brown sugar and cook until it bubbles and the sugar is mostly dissolved, about 4 minutes.
- Take the pan off the heat and layer the tomatoes over the caramel creating a nice design/pattern.
- Mix together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside. Cream together the rest of the butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy in a mixer with the whisk attachment.
- Whisk in the eggs 1 a time. Add the vanilla extract with the last egg.
- Add half of the flour mixture and mix. Mix in the milk and add the rest of the flour and whisk just until combined.
- Pour the batter over the tomatoes in the pan and bake for about 40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- After 10 minutes, run a knife around the edge of the pan and put your serving plate on top of the pan. Clasp the bottom of the pan with potholders and the plate with your thumbs and flip it over.
- Slice the cake and serve with whipped cream on top.