Cranberry Upside Down Cake with Orange
A sweet, tart and colourful cranberry upside down cake. It’s made with white chocolate and flavoured with orange and cardamom. Chilli is an optional extra. Perfect for Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year’s Day or any other winter festivities. Cranberries aren’t just for turkeys.
It was the last Clandestine Cake Club of the year and to cheer us up through the dank, dark days of November, the theme was “a splash of colour”. Time was of the essence. I had to leave the house at 8:30 to get to the venue at Truro for 10:00 and I had to create my bake that morning. So not only something colourful, but something simple was also needed. I knew the very thing.
I’ve made cranberry upside down cake a few times and it’s always very well received. However, this time I felt the addition of some warming chilli wouldn’t go amiss. So the last vestiges of my Dartmoor Dragon white chocolate chilli bar winged its way into the mix. Talking of dragons, I’m looking forward to the next instalment of The Hobbit, coming to a cinema near you sometime very soon.
So literally hot out of the oven and into the back of the car, off we headed to Truro. Who needs an air freshener when they have hot cake on board? We had a wonderfully fragrant drive.
Cranberry Upside Down Cake with Orange & Cardamom
This cranberry upside down cake is wonderfully versatile. I’ve made it with just cranberries, with cardamom, with white chocolate, with orange and even chilli. The version I’ve given in the recipe below is an amalgamation of all of these, minus the chilli. I highly recommend the addition of white chocolate, it just gives a little extra depth and substance.
If you fancy a chilli version, use chilli white chocolate, as I did for the Clandestine Cake Club. If you can’t get hold of any, just add a little chilli powder or cayenne powder along with the flour.
Fresh cranberries aren’t always easy to find, so it’s fine to use frozen if that’s all you have.
Though I say it myself, the cranberry cake was absolutely scrummy. It benefited, I felt, from the addition of the white hot chilli chocolate. Everyone seemed to enjoy it at CCC too. It was moist with a good flavour and the tartness of the berries offset the general sweetness. Heavens, that naga chilli, even in such a small quantity, still had a bit of a kick to it. It wasn’t as fast acting as my previous bakes, but it crept up on you and left a warm glow in the back of the throat.
Clandestine Cake Club
The colour of my cake wasn’t quite as vibrant as some, but it held its own both in looks and taste. A splash of colour was a particularly appropriate theme, given our venue was an art shop in Truro. Thanks go as always to our splendid organiser Ellie Michell and to Truro Arts Company for the colourful venue.
Keep in Touch
Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you make this festive cranberry upside down cake, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.
Cranberry Upside Down Cake. PIN IT.
Cranberry Upside Down Cake – The Recipe
Cranberry Upside Down Cake
- 50 g unsalted butter
- 175 g golden caster sugar (I used cardamom sugar)
- 250 g fresh cranberries
- 50 g white chocolate (I sometimes use white chilli chocolate)
- 200 g golden caster sugar (I used cardamom sugar)
- 200 g unsalted butter
- 4 cardamom pods (unless using cardamom sugar)
- pinch of sea or rock salt
- 1 orange - zest and juice
- 4 medium eggs
- 225 g wholemeal spelt flour (or half wholemeal flour and half plain)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 4 tbsp sour milk or kefir
- Melt the butter in a large pan.
- Add the sugar and leave on the heat for a couple of minutes.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the cranberries. Leave to one side.
- In a large bowl placed over a pan of not quite boiling water, melt the chocolate.
- Cream the sugar and butter until pale in colour and fluffy in texture.
- Grind the seeds of the cardamom pods to a powder and add along with the salt and orange zest. Cream a bit more.
- Beat in the eggs alternately with a spoonful of the flour (see next line).
- Sift in the flour and baking powder.
- Stir in the sour milk or kefir along with the orange juice.
- Turn the cranberries and sugar into a 23cm round silicone cake mould or lined tin, then pile the batter on top.
- Bake for 40 minutes at 180℃ (350℉, Gas 4) or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool for a few minutes, then turn out onto a plate.