I know there's a lot of advice that says one should not eat pineapple when you are pregnant in the east, but there's also the Western part of my life that says all fruits all good. The most important deciding factor, however is the craving! When people ask me if I had any craving during those early months, honestly I didn't have except wanting to eat more fruits and yogurt. During these 20-24ish week, I crave for pineapples and coconut. Whatever form it comes in, juice, fresh, dessicated - I'll take them all.
There's a Singaporean way of eating fresh pineapples - dipping them in a chili padi-infused dark soy sauce. I'm not sure how many still eat it that way but it's actually my favourite :). Anyway, I decided to compromise the pineapple eating myth and make a cake out of it, after all the acidity and stuff that pineapples are supposed to be harmful for will be caramelized in this cake. It's quite a sweet cake in my opinion and the recipe is from Joy of Baking's website and I used fresh pineapples instead of canned ones. The difficult part about this cake is probably the caramelization because I've only done the castor-sugar caramel before, but not the butter-brown sugar and the brown makes it difficult to judge if it has started caramelizing or not. I figured that's probably why my cake is quite dark compared to the picture shown on the website. Another tip is, don't use those cake pans that has a removable bottom because when you bake it, the caramel topping will be runny again and seep out and drip in the oven. Johan's colleagues like this a lot so this recipe is dedicated to them :)
55 grams unsalted butter, cut in small pieces
160 grams light brown sugar
1/2 medium pineapple (peeled, quartered, cored, and sliced 1/4 inch thick)
195 grams all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
113 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
200 grams granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, separated
120 ml milk
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- In a small pot, place the butter for the topping and brown sugar and stir over medium heat until the sugar and butter melts, and when bubbles starts to appear in slow sequence, it should be caramelized by then. Pour it into a greased cake pan, covering the bottom evenly.
- Place the sliced pineapples evenly over the caramel and set aside while you prepare the cake batter.
- Mix the flour, salt and baking powder in a bowl and set aside.
- Cream the butter and castor sugar (I might consider to reduce the amount next time) together until light and fluffy, then add the vanilla extract, then the egg yolks one by one, beating thoroughly after each addition.
- Then add in 1/3 of the flour, 1/2 the milk, 1/3 flour, the other 1/2 of the milk and finally the last 1/3 of the flour, mixing each addition thoroughly before adding the next one. You can put the oven to preheat at 177°C at this point.
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg white with the cream of tartar until stiff peak is formed. Then fold in the egg white into the batter mixture in two additions.
- Pour over the caramel-pineapple layer in the cake pan, smoothing it out and bake for about 55 minutes or until the center is set when you test with a skewer and it comes out clean.
- Take it out from the oven and leave it in the cake pan to cool for about 10 minutes before you attempt to turn it upside down onto a serving plate.