I’ve had a fig obsession for a little while now as evidenced by my recent forray into figgy pizza and I’m totally obsessed with this upside down cake which I first made a few weeks ago. Admittedly my second attempt wasn’t quite so great but that could have been avoided if I’d been a bit more au fait with the lifespan of figs kept out of the fridge so when I went to cut them up they hadn’t been mostly off! Sad times.
This recipe started life taken from this recipe on Broma Bakery and actually I haven’t changed it an awful lot, just substituting a little for what I had to hand and making it wheatard friendly. I also had a learning curve regarding the cooking time – it is tricky to check that the figs are caramelized on the bottom and the cake is cooked through but not overcooked. I took mine out too early – no major panic, I just put it back in the oven to bake little longer.
The original recipe is in cups and I’ve not converted it – cups are really quite easy to use. Most measuring jugs contain a cup measure or a set of measuring cups can be picked up really quite cheaply from nearly everywhere. To measure butter – just mush it on in the cup!
6 tbsp and 1/2 cup Butter
1 cup light Brown Sugar
2/3 cup Sugar
3/4 cup Creme Fraiche
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Orange Extract
1&1/2 cups White Spelt Flour (or Plain Flour)
2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Sea Salt Flakes
Pre-heat the oven to 180c.
Line a large pie dish or springform tin with a disposable liner or greaseproof paper.
Spread 6 tbsp Butter over the bottom of the lined dish.
Tip – I just used my fingers to mush it over. You could melt the butter first and pour it in if you prefer. I couldn’t be bothered to mess up another pot so I went with the smushing method.
Sprinkle 1/3 cup Light Brown Sugar over the butter layer and then cut 12 Figs in half lengthways (top to bottom) and lay them cut face down on the butter and sugar.
Tip – Remember that the cut figs will eventually be the presentation face of the cake so try to lay them in some kind of fairly attractive manner. Or don’t, whatever floats your boat! My OCD tenancies overtake my ‘I don’t care how the food looks’ tenancies in this sort of instance.
Cream 1/2 cup Butter and 2/3 cup Light Brown Sugar using an electric hand whisk or stand mixer until light and fluffy.
Beat 2 Eggs into the mix one at a time, beating well in between each.
Beat in 3/4 cup Creme Fraiche, 2 tsp Vanilla Extract and 1 tsp Orange Extract until well combined.
Stir 1&1/2 cups White Spelt Flour, 2 tsp Baking Powder and 1/2 tsp Sea Salt Flakes into the batter.
Tip – Don’t use the electric whisk at this point, just some gentle manual labour and a metal spoon or spatula as overbeating the flour will make it tough.
Spoon the batter over the fig with relative care to not move the figs too much. Vaguely smooth over the top to make an even layer.
Bake for 50 minutes before checking to see if the batter is cooked all the way through.
Tip – Use a skewer or knife in the middle thickest section.
Lift the greaseproof paper or liner gently to see if the butter and sugar has formed a caramel layer over the figs underneath.
Tip – Put back in the oven and recheck at 5 minute intervals until cooked. The above picture required about 15 minutes more cooking.
Leave the cake to cool for 10-15 minutes and then turn the cake out onto a large serving plate.
Tip – Put the serving plate over the top of the cake pan then slide the whole thing over the edge of the worktop counter until you can rest one hand underneath the cake pan. Take the weight with this hand while placing your other hand palm down on the underside of the serving plate. Lift the whole shebang and flip over. Place back on the counter and then lift the cake pan off then peel away the greaseproof paper or liner.
Tip – Beware of hot caramel seepage – a slightly lipped serving plate is a good idea.
Serve in slices with creme fraiche or if it’s that kind of day; custard or clotted cream.