Fancy Fruits: Upside Down Peach Cake

“I don’t want it to end…”

Every summer for the past decade our family has spent a couple of weeks in the Adirondack mountains, helping with my husband’s family forest. This year, because of the timing of two additional events, our time in the mountains was sandwiched by a mini-vacation as an immediate family and then a 50th anniversary celebration with extended family. The result was that almost the entire month of August was time away from home, being with people we loved, doing many fun things, in addition to working in the forest.

When all this special time was coming to an end yesterday, I found my youngest crying on the second floor of the lodge my mother-in-law had rented. I asked what was wrong, and he said, “I don’t want it to end. I want it to be like this forever.”

I understood how he felt because I feel the same way every year as summer closes and the new school year begins. Summertime, with less hustle and bustle and relaxed rules, is a happy time for me with the children, simply being a family. So, as the days draw near for school to resume, I find myself saying the same thing my son did, “I don’t want it to end. I want it to be like this forever.”

Life and time don’t stand still, though, and we leave summer days behind in favor of autumnal comings. For me, I always know that summer is ending when the farm stand up the road from us starts slowing down on the peaches they are able to pick and sell. It is always around now, and I am glad each year that I arrive home from the mountains with just enough time for one more batch of fresh peach shopping.

Because we had company coming over tonight, I used some of the peaches to make an upside down peach cake, and I thought I would share the recipe with folks since it has been a few weeks since my last post (for the reasons cited above!). Since fresh peaches aren’t always available, I included the amount I use for when I make the cake with frozen peaches.

Upside Down Peach Cake

Ingredients:

two cups sliced fresh peaches or one 16 oz bag frozen peaches, no sugar added

2 tbsp dairy free butter

2 tbsp Agave

2 cups gluten free brown rice flour blend

1 cup sorghum flour (can also substitute oat or millet flour)

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

3/4 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1 cup Tofutti sour cream (you can also substitute mayonnaise or dairy free yogurt)

2/3 cup safflower oil

2 eggs

2/3 cup Agave

1 tbsp vinegar

Instructions:

In a shallow, large pan, melt the 2 tbsp “butter” (I use Earth Balance soy-free, vegan butter) with the 2 tbsp of Agave. Add the frozen peaches and cook for about 4-5 minutes, flipping them after about 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Remove the peach slices, putting them onto the bottom of a well greased or parchment paper lined 9 x 13 pan. Cook the butter mixture another minute until it’s thickened, and then evenly pour it over the peach slices.

Mix the gluten free flour blend with the sorghum flour, the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.

Mix the Toffuti sour cream with the safflower oil, eggs, and Agave.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet, along with the vinegar, and quickly mix them together just until the dry ingredients are moistened. Carefully spread the batter over the peaches.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 25 to 30 minutes. The cake will be golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean. When you take the cake out of the oven, you should cool it on a wire cooling rack for at least ten minutes and then flip it onto a platter which you can then put onto the cooling rack so the cake and cool completely. Be sure to flip it onto a pretty platter which has a rim for catching any of the syrup. If a peach is stuck on the bottom of the pan, just pull it off and insert it back into its missing space.

When you serve the cake, you can serve it with whipped cream or ice cream (or their substitute counterparts) or plain.

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