When retro is new again (Pineapple Upside Down Cake in a Skillet)

skipaheadOver the weekend we celebrated my littlest sister and her 19th year. Yes, my sister is entering into her last teen year. I just can’t believe it. She’ll always be my baby sister though. After all, when I’m 99 she’ll only be 89. Spring chicken!

My baby sister and my baby boy.

My baby sister and my baby boy.

To celebrate her birthday, we went to the zoo and then made any cake she wanted. She could have chosen a chocolate cake with chocolate ganache and chocolate ice cream. Or a lemon infused three-tiered cake with butter cream frosting. But no, she chose pineapple upside-down cake. And when I told her she was being retro and a little bit too easy on me she blinked back at me confused. Apparently 19 is too young to know that a pineapple upside-down cake is old-school.

Happy Birthday, Michelle!

Happy Birthday, Michelle!

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake (In an Iron Skillet)

Overall: four-star

DSCF48701This is such a throw back recipe. It reminds me something that my grandmother probably made as a newlywed. I’d never made it though and it was really pretty good. The flavor didn’t blow me away, but it was easy to make and such a sweet presentation. (Recipe here, from The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl.) Continue reading


This is where cranberries go to heaven: Cranberry Pudding

I ripped this recipe out of my Taste of Home magazine months ago and decided that I’d make this when 1) I had some cranberries to use up and 2) I had a springform pan. I like to buy up a dozen or so bags of cranberries from the produce section in my grocery store just after Christmas or Thanksgiving (it usually goes on sale then and you can get them cheap) and just store them in the freezer. Whole cranberries freeze like nobody’s business. Then you can throw them into a berry pie, breads, or make a fancy cranberry pudding.

The PushPan.

Cranberries? Check.

Now all I needed was a springform pan. E and I went shopping over the weekend and stumbled in to my favorite kitchen store. I was looking through their springform pans when I saw the PushPan. (I feel like we could be talking about someone’s idea of a lame push present. “You just had a baby? I know, you need a Push Pan! Tahdah!”) It’s basically a metal plate with a gasket around it that you push down into a ring. It doesn’t say it exactly, and the staff at the kitchen store couldn’t say for sure, but it works in lieu of a springform pan. It also works fine as a regular cake pan – you can even push the pan up or down to change the depth of your cake. The gasket is a nice touch since it prevents leaks. I figured I’d take it home and see if I could make it work for the cranberry recipe. If I couldn’t, at least I’d still have a neat cake pan.

Springform-ish pan? Check. Lets get baking!

Baked Cranberry Pudding

Overall: four-star

This traditional recipe, from Taste of Home Magazine, is very good – just a ton of clean up!

Continue reading