Posting date for this seasonal upside-down cake (with booze!) is August 18. How will you top it? Whipped cream? More caramel?
Whiskey Peach Upside-Down Cake
Yield: One 9-inch, single-layer cake
For the Whiskey Cake Topping
3 ounces (3⁄4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar 2 tablespoons good-quality whiskey
1 pound fresh peaches, cut into 1⁄4- or 1⁄2-inch slices, or frozen sliced peaches, defrosted on paper towels
For the Whiskey Cake
3⁄4 cup cake flour
3⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
11⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
3 ounces (3⁄4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large egg yolks, plus 2 large egg whites, divided
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3⁄4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1⁄4 teaspoon pure almond extract
3⁄4 cup well-shaken buttermilk
2 tablespoons good-quality whiskey
1⁄2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Whiskey Whipped Cream (optional, page 86)
Make the Whiskey Cake Topping
Preheat the oven to 350°F and position the rack in the center. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan, line the bottom with parchment, and butter the parchment.
In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the brown sugar and whiskey and cook until the sugar is melted and the mixture is foamy. Remove from the heat, pour into the prepared pan, and swirl the mixture to coat the bottom of the pan.
Arrange the peach slices in a circle directly on top of the sugar mixture to cover the bottom of the pan. Do not try to overload the pan with peaches and do not be concerned if you have a few peaches left over. Set the pan aside.
Make the Whiskey Cake
In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the granulated sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg yolks, oil, vanilla, and almond extract and beat until just combined.
In a small bowl or glass measuring cup, whisk together the buttermilk and the whiskey. Add the flour mixture to the mixer bowl in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl, then mix on low speed for a few more seconds.
In a medium bowl (or in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attach- ment), whisk the egg whites vigorously for 1 minute. Sprinkle the cream of tartar over the whites and continue beating until soft peaks form.
Gently fold one-quarter of the egg white mixture into the cake batter until almost combined. The mixture will begin to lighten. Fold another quarter of the egg white mixture into the cake batter until nearly combined. Finally, add the remaining egg white mixture to the cake batter and fold in gently until completely combined.
Pour the batter over the peaches (since this is an upside-down cake, the peaches will become the topping when you flip the cake over later). Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking time, until the cake is very brown (but not burnt) and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake (not all the way through to the sticky topping) comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool for at least 15 minutes. Run a paring knife around the edge of the cake and carefully invert onto a serving platter. Let the cake cool to almost room temperature and serve with a dollop of whiskey whipped cream, if desired.
The cake tastes best the day it is made; however, it can be stored in the refrigerator, covered with a cake dome or in a cake saver, for up to 2 days. Bring the cake to room temperature before serving.
Excerpted from Baked Elements: Our 10 Favorite Ingredients by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. Copyright © 2012 by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito. Excerpted by permission of Stewart, Tabori & Chang, an imprint of Abrams. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.