Cook Time: 1 hr
Yield: 1 (9-inch) cake
1 fresh pineapple, peeled, cored
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups lightly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup maraschino cherries, stems removed
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups granulated sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Powdered sugar, for dusting cake
1 quart yogurt gelato, store bought to serve with cake
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Cut pineapple into 1/2-inch thick circles. In a small saucepan melt butter and add light brown sugar to make caramel. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes until caramel is amber then pour into a 9-inch nonstick cake pan. Arrange pineapple circles evenly in the caramel, (1 in the center and 5 around the outside usually works), and press down so they are submergred in the caramel. Place 1 maraschino cherry in the center of each pineapple ring.
For the batter:
Sift flour into a large bowl. Add the baking powder and salt and stir to combine.
In another large bowl, using a wooden spoon to stir, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla and whisk to combine. Gradually add the flour mixture, stirring, just to incorporate. Pour the batter into the cake pan over the caramel and pineapple and bake in the oven for approximately 1 hour (the cake should be nice and golden on top and slightly puffed). When gently pressed in the center the cake should bounce back. Allow to cool slightly before inverting onto a cake plate.
Dust very lightly with confectioners' sugar and serve with a scoop of yogurt gelato.