Slow Roasted Blood Orange Upside-Down Cake

Blood Oranges and I have a long-standing love affair. In years past I have posted recipes for Blood Orange-cello, Blood Orange Meringue Tartlets, and Blood Orange and Bourbon Chipotle BBQ Chicken among others. I am drawn to the mottled red-orange skin and the inner blood-red burst of color as much as to the flavor. They are natural art works, each and every one unique and deliciously stunning.

This is a simple upside down cake with slow-roasted blood oranges which brings out another layer of tastiness. Blood oranges are abundant in supermarkets this time of year so eat them while you can…raw, cooked or juiced.

Full of antioxidants and high in Vitamin C and potassium, Blood Oranges are uniquely colored due to “anthocyanins”. These are flavonoid pigments which exist in red and purple vegetables, most berries and are incredibly healthy.

Thinly sliced and ready for roasting…..

….sprinkled lightly with raw sugar…..

….roasted at 275 degrees for 45 minutes……

….in my favorite Lodge cast iron skillet.   First smeared with butter….

….the bottom covered with roasted rings of oranges and another sprinkle of sugar.

Topped with cake batter and baked…..

…ready to eat. So good with a cup of coffee or tea on a cold winter day.

Slow Roasted Blood Orange Upside-Down Cake

  • Servings: 8-10
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Ingredients:

  • 4 blood oranges
  • 1 1/4 cups raw or  turbinado sugar, divided
  • 8 tablespoons softened butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup yellow cornmeal or polenta
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk or vanilla yogurt

Directions:

  1. To roast blood orange slices:  Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Cut ends off of each orange and then slice thinly, removing any seeds as you work.
  2. Arrange blood orange slices flat on a baking sheet and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of raw sugar. Roast for about 45 minutes or until they are caramelized and softened. Remove pan from oven and let cool for 10 minutes.
  3. Turn oven to 350 degrees. Smear a 10 inch cast iron skillet with 2 tablespoons of the butter to coat bottom and sides. Arrange roasted orange slices, slightly overlapping, in the bottom of the skillet and sprinkle with 1/4 cup of raw sugar.
  4. Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt in a bowl.
  5. Using an electric mixer beat together the remaining 6 tablespoons butter and 1/2 cup raw sugar until fluffy. Add in vanilla and blend.
  6. Mix in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one.
  7. Add flour mixture and buttermilk, alternately, ending with flour just until well mixed.
  8. Drop batter by spoonfuls over sugared orange slices in skillet and gently spread out evenly.
  9. Bake cake until a tester comes out clean, about 35-45 minutes. Cool cake for 10 minutes in skillet. Run a small knife around edge to loosen if necessary.
  10. Place a plate over the top of the skillet and flip to loosen cake onto plate using oven mitts or kitchen towels so you don’t burn your hands! Scrape out any sugar-juice mixture left in skillet and smear over cake. Serve cake warm or at room temp.

Teresa Blackburn   teresablackburnfoodstyling.com

Snow Day In Nashvlle Black Bean Mole Chili with Coconut Cornbread

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I just love this Southern city that shuts down neatly and absolutely at the first sign of a snowflake! I really do…totally…seriously. This morning I awoke to a hushed quiet…no clamor of jack-hammers, no hubbub of beeping trucks backing up, no babel of traffic…shhhhhh…it’s quiet here…can you hear it? I am right downtown and it is tranquil!

A day such as this calls for staying indoors & hot steaming bowls of chili. Any kind of chili you like. But how about my “Black Bean Mole Chili”? Thick with beans, tomatoes…spiced with chipotle chile powder, cocoa and freshly squeezed orange juice all cooked down to make a snow day anywhere more cozy!

Out my front window early morning.

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Not a true “mole negro”, but with much of the same flavor as one I remember eating in Oaxaca a few years ago. That mole was so thick and dark red-black in color smothering the roasted chicken I was eating  that the incredible flavor is forever part of my best-loved food memories. My version is in no way authentic, but is a tribute to the real thing.

Dark cocoa and chili pepper combined to enrich the other ingredients…all cooked down to a thick dark red-black color.

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“Coconut Cornbread Cakes” made in one of my favorite Lodge Cast Iron pans.

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Black Bean Mole Chili

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients for Chili:

  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1  small onion diced
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbsp Chipotle chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp Cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 4 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 large cans diced tomatoes with juices
  • salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy pan over medium high heat. Add onions to pan and cook until translucent. Add garlic and cook, stirring for 2 minutes.
  2. Sprinkle in, while stirring, the cocoa powder, chipotle chili powder, cumin powder, cinnamon and allspice. Turn heat to medium and cook for 3 minutes while stirring.
  3. Add orange juice to pan. Stir to blend and cook for 10 minutes over medium heat.
  4. Add black beans and tomatoes to the pan and bring to a low boil. Stirring often. Turn heat to simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. Serve with coconut cornbread cakes.

Ingredients for Coconut Cornbread:

  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut, divided
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 cup self-rising yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Place cast iron pan (skillet or muffin tin) with coconut oil in the oven to heat while you make the batter.
  3. Mix together 1/2 cup of the coconut, cornmeal, flour, coconut milk, buttermilk and egg just until blended. Add more liquid if you need to.
  4. When pan is really hot, remove from oven and quickly pour in batter.
  5. Sprinkle top of batter with remaining 1/2 cup coconut and bake until cornbread is puffy and golden brown and the coconut is browned. Delicious served hot with chili.

Teresa Blackburn     http://www.teresablackburnfoodstyling.com     http://www.foodonfifth.com

A Summer Stone Fruit Skillet Cake & a Maple Syrup Drizzle

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Fruit with pits….Stone fruit….Drupes….all names for a group of plentiful Summer fruits such as peaches, plums, cherries and apricots. Pluots are a hybrid of plums and apricots. My friend Mark has a tree with hundreds of these beauties hanging heavy and ripe that he was so gracious to share with me. The Rainier Cherries I picked up at a local market. Don’t the cherries look like wee pluots?

I made this cake last week when the temp got down to the high 70’s and low 80’s during the day. I did not mind turning on the oven for a bit to make this simple skillet cake with my stash of stone fruit.

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A generous smearing of softened butter on the skillet surface first, then the sliced pluots & cherries to cover the bottom.

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This batter is a cross between traditional cake & cornbread batters. Orange Flower water & vanilla extract added to the batter created a wonderful aroma in my kitchen while it was baking.

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Is there anything not made better with a bit of Maple Syrup drizzled on top?

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Warm, moist, aromatic & fruity with a cake texture and a hint of the cornmeal crunch. A bit more drizzle on each serving. A good brunch cake or for the late afternoon with a cup of coffee or tea when we all need a break. Here….have a bite.

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A Summer Cornmeal Skillet Cake with a Maple Syrup Drizzle

  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp softened butter
  • 1 cup self-rising yellow cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup self-rising flour
  • 1/2 cup turbinado or brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp Orange Flour water
  • 3/4 to 1 cup Buttermilk or Whole Milk
  • 3-4 pitted & thickly sliced Pluots
  • 8-10 pitted Rainier Cherries, cut in half if large or left whole if small
  • Maple Syrup to drizzle over the warm cake

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter a 8 or 10 inch black iron skillet.
  2. Cover the bottom of the skillet with pluots slices and cherries.
  3. In a mixing bowl whisk together the cornmeal, flour & brown sugar.
  4. To the bowl add the eggs, Vanilla extract, Orange Flower water and enough of the buttermilk or whole milk to create a batter.
  5. Pour batter over the stone fruit in the skillet.
  6. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the center of the cake is set and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Adjust baking time to suit your oven. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack for about 10 minutes.
  7. Turn cake upside down on a serving plate and drizzle with pure Maple Syrup.
  8. Serve cut into slices with additional drizzle if desired.

Recipe by: teresablackburnfoodstyling.com           Blog: foodonfifth.com