It’s unclear whom we have to thank for the caramelly goodness of upside-down cake, but cooking lore says that bakers have been flipping their cakes to reveal showstopping fruit toppings for centuries. In this version, a spiral of golden pineapple slices enhances a delicious banana cake.
Tip: When cutting a pineapple, begin by slicing off the top and bottom. Stand it on end and, slicing downward, cut the skin off in wide strips. With your knife, carve out the eyes. Then halve, core, and cut the fruit crosswise into 1/8-inch-thick slices. —Martha Stewart
large pineapple, peeled, cut in half lengthwise, cored, and sliced crosswise into 1/8-inch-thick pieces
unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups
very ripe bananas, mashed until smooth (about 1 cup)
large eggs, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350°F. Pour 1/4 cup melted butter into a 9-inch round baking pan, swirling to evenly coat bottom. Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over butter. To create a flower motif: Arrange pineapple, with rounded edges facing outward, over brown sugar; overlap slices in concentric circle from the center out, to completely cover cake.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt until combined.
In a large bowl, whisk remaining 3/4 cup melted butter, the bananas, buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla until well combined. Add flour mixture and stir to combine. Pour cake batter over pineapples, smoothing top with a small offset spatula.
Bake until top is deep golden and a cake tester comes out clean, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool 15 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pan, invert cake onto a plate, and let cool completely before serving.