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History Cookbook: Pineapple upside-down cake

This recipe is in categories Postwar / Modern, Baking, Desserts, Party food, Vegetarian
About this recipe
Healthiness : (252 votes)
Comments: All cooking takes place at the end. Use oven gloves when handling the cake tin.
Preparation Time: 15-20 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Number of servings: 6-8
Serving suggestions: Serve warm on its own or with a little ice cream
This is a vegetarian recipe

In February 1953 sweet rationing ended and later in that year sugar and eggs came off ration. By 1954 fats, meat and cheeses had finally came off ration too and wartime ration books were discarded. During this century baking became very popular as people were able to obtain the raw ingredients for the first time in years.

In the late 1950's convenience foods such as cake and sponge mixes, frozen peas and sliced white bread came onto the market and became popular quickly. Exotic foods such as pineapple, aubergine and avacodo pears became available and this recipe reflects this. Many of these new foods only really began to gain popularity in the 1960's.


For the topping;

  • 50g softened butter
  • 50g light brown sugar
  • 4- 7 tinned pineapple rings (7 is a large tin)
  • 6-8 glace cherries

For the cake;

  • 100g softened butter 
  • 100g caster sugar (soft brown is nice)
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs

  • Weighing scales
  • 8” (20cm) cake tin
  • Teaspoon
  • Wooden spoon
  • Mixing bowl
  • Knife
  • Chopping board
Making and cooking it
Always wash your hands before preparing food Always wash your hands before preparing food.

  1. Heat the oven to Gas 4, 180 C
  2. Cream the butter and sugar and spread over the base of the cake tin and a quarter of the way up the sides
  3. Drain the pineapple (keep the juice for later) and arrange over the base of the tin. Place the cherries into the centre of the rings

To make the cake:

Method 1:Traditional

  1. Cream the sugar and butter together
  2. Add the vanilla extract 
  3. Beat the eggs
  4. Add a little egg to the mixture and stir in
  5. Mix the flour and baking powder together
  6. Sift a little into the mixture and stir
  7. Continue to add flour and egg until the mixture becomes stiff, then add the pineapple juice  and mix until smooth. Take care not to beat the air out of the cake or it will not rise
  8. Spoon into the tin on top of the pineapple and then bake for 35 minutes. Leave to stand for 5 minutes then turn out

Method 2: The quick method

  1. Place all cake ingredients into a bowl and, using an elecric whisk, beat until smooth
  2. Spoon into the tin on top of the pineapple and then bake for 35 minutes. Leave to stand for 5 minutes then turn out

Serve warm with ice cream or cold on its own.

Pineapple upside-down cake - print view  Pineapple upside-down cake - print view

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There are 4 comments for this recipe.
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Name: Abs 20th January 2012
I love the step by step clear guide, even though I'm sure you missed one or two stages! Well done for still maintaining consistency in the photos!
Name: Smile Face 8th February 2011
i love this recipe it is very nice to eat
Name: Trevor 2nd October 2009
this website is da best eva
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