My childhood summers are relived with this great summer berry snack cake. Family trips to Michigan’s berry belt, roadside farm stands and “u-pick” farms on “The Red Arrow Highway” are some of my sweetest summer memories.
A blend of berries gives this cake a balance of tart and sweet. Served with whipped cream or ice cream, it will please the whole family.
Bungalow Chef’s Summer Berry Upside Down Cake
Yields 6-8 servings
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cubed at room temperature, divided
1 1/4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups fresh mixed berries (raspberries, blueberries and blackberries) cut in half if large
3 teaspoons fresh lemon zest
2 large eggs at room temperature
1 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Using a 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat, melt 1/4 cup butter. (I always use my Lodge cast-iron skillet.) Add the lemon juice, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook and stir until mixture is thick and bubbly.
Remove from heat. Toss the berries and 2 teaspoons of the lemon zest in a bowl and arrange over the sugar mixture in the skillet. Any cut berries should be placed cut side up.
When mixing the dough, I use a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Place the remaining butter and sugar in the mixer and beat on a high speed until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and mix well. Add the vanilla and the remaining lemon zest.
In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and remaining salt.
Now add 1/3 of the milk and 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and blend well on a low speed. Continue adding the milk and dry ingredients at this rate. Scrape down the bowl and beaters as needed and mix until the batter is blended. (Dough will be thick and heavy.) Spread the batter onto the berries in the skillet.
Place the skillet on a rimmed baking sheet in the preheated oven. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the cake is golden brown in color and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for 30 minutes. Run a small paring knife around the edge of the cake.
Warm the skillet over low heat on your range for 2 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and, invert the cake on a platter or cake stand. Dust the cake with powdered sugar and serve with ice-cream or whipped cream.