Upside-down Strawberry Cake with Cardamom

My friend Sharon told me about an upside-down strawberry cake she was making for the 4th this weekend and sent along some photos of her masterpiece. After my peach pie escapade on Friday, I was happy to make something that had been pre-tested and approved by a good friend. We both follow Joy the Baker in our Google Readers and are slightly obsessed with all things cardamom. Since we no longer live in the same city, making the same dish and swapping details was a fun way to reconnect this weekend. I tested it 33 minutes in (recipe suggests 35) and it was actually a bit dry. You can’t win every time but at least it was pretty!

recipe found on

makes: one 8-inch cake


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2/3 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

You can use an 8-inch round with 3-inch tall sides or a 9-inch round with 2-inch sides. I used my Grammy’s rice pudding pan which is 9-inches by 3-inches.

Place butter in the cake pan and place in the oven.  When butter is melted, remove pan from the oven.  Using two pot holders, tilt the pan around and around, coating the sides of the pan with butter.  Once sides are coated, set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cardamom.  Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter and brown sugar on medium speed.  Cream until slightly pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Stop mixer, scrape down the bowl with a spatula, and add egg and vanilla extract.  Beat for 1 minute.

Turn the mixer off, scrape the bowl, and add the dry ingredients.  Beat on low speed while adding the sour cream.  Beat until the batter just comes together.  Batter will be pretty thick.  Remove the bowl from the mixer and finish incorporating ingredients with a spatula.

Sprinkle 1/4 cup brown sugar into the melted butter in the cake pan.  Sprinkle strawberry slices over the butter and sugar in a single layer.  Spoon batter over the strawberries and spread evenly with a spatula.  Bake for about 35 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let cake rest for 10 minutes before running a knife around the edge of the cake and inverting the cake onto a cake plate.  Serve warm with sweetened sour or whipped cream.


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