Thursday, December 18, 2008

Nigella's Pineapple Upside Down Cake

I baked a birthday cake for Jolie, and hubby requested that it be pineapple upside down cake. Rather unusual choice, but I've never had this cake before, so why not give it a try? I chose Nigella's version because she says it's totally fine to use canned pineapples. Martha Stewart's recipe is hardcore - peel and slice your own pineapple! Sorry, but I'm never in the mood for that.

Festive colours good enough to eat
Anyway, Nigella's recipe is (once again) terrific. This was so easy - barely 15 minutes of prep, 30 minutes oventime, and you have delicious cake! The red and green cherries double up as a festive Christmas accent.

Nigella's pineapple upside down cake

Here's the recipe which you can find in her Nigella Express book, or on her lovely redesigned website. I used an ordinary 22cm cake tin. As I have no food processor, I simply softened the butter in a saucepot (on low heat) and mixed all the ingredients together. It works fine.


butter for greasing
2 x 15ml tablespoons sugar
6 slices pineapple from a 425g can, plus 3 x 15ml tablespoons of the juice
11 glacé cherries, approx. 75g total weight
100g flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
100g soft butter
100g caster sugar
2 eggs


1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6. Butter a tarte Tatin tin (24cm wide at the top and 20cm diameter at the bottom) or use a 23cm cake tin (neither loose-bottomed nor springform).
2. Sprinkle the 2 tablespoons of sugar on top of the buttered base, and then arrange the pineapple slices to make a circular pattern as in the picture.
3. Fill each pineapple ring with a glacé cherry, and then dot one in each of the spaces in between.
4. Put the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, butter, caster sugar and eggs into a food processor and run the motor until the batter is smooth. Then pour in the 3 tablespoons of pineapple juice to thin it a little.
5. Pour this mixture carefully over the cherry-studded pineapple rings; it will only just cover it, so spread it out gently.
6. Bake for 30 minutes, then ease a spatula around the edge of the tin, place a plate on top and, with one deft – ha! – move, turn it upside-down.

Serves 8


  1. What a beautiful cake :-)
    Your oven's put to good use!

    I feel so silly. I was expecting a square cake with 9 pineapple rings. Then I realise, you can have it any shape you want.

    (my mum makes square ones. lol)

  2. Oh drool~~

    You've got the midas touch, all your first times turn out so pretty!

  3. Kman: I guess square is the traditional shape. But round one looks more "flower-like", don't you think? :P I didn't buy any square cake tins, so I guess all my cakes will be round! lol

    The Martha Stewart one is square, with four rings, and mango to boot.

    Ocha: thanks, I guess it's beginner's luck! :D

  4. The cake looks so pretty with the cherries and pineapples on top. Puts me in the xmas mood already.

  5. That's what I love about Nigella... she makes things simple for us normal people. :)

  6. been meaning to get that nigella book but hmmm, must find time to cook (eventhough it's express)...haha!

    happy belated birthday to little jolie! ;)

  7. beautiful! I'm not a fan of canned pineapple but this looks fabulous!

  8. Hey,
    is it okay to use other canned fruits other than pineapple for this cake?


    p/s your cake looks awesome moresome!!!

  9. didally: bake it for xmas!

    Kenny: she does, doesn't she? I like that she's just like one of us, not a formally trained chef, but someone who loves to eat as much as cook.

    Nic: thanks! Get the book, it'll get you cooking in no time!

    Southernoise: thanks!!

    BTA: yes, I would think other fruits would work as well. I was thinking of using sliced peaches too. Will try someday!

  10. Hi how do you mix your ingredient together? just stirred them altogether or use a whipper?

  11. wow nice! rather unusual for a birthday cake though. haha. happy birthday jolie : )

  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

  13. The cake is awesome! The colours in writings are wonderful too. I love anything that has pineapple in it. I want to prepare the same for my son's birthday party.

  14. Hi - I was wondering if you were interested in
    collaborating on a televised baking project I am working on? I couldn’t find any contacts to talk with you direct. If you are interested please email me at talya.stone100 AT googlemail DOT com.
    Thanks & hope to speak soon,


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