I just got back from a quick trip to the Big Island in Hawaii where my friend had a plate of individual pineapple upside down cakes waiting on the kitchen table. They were absolutely scrumptious and came from the local Mamane Bakery in Kamuela. I decided to try them at home using my standard muffin batter and create a slightly less sweet tribute to Pineapple Upside Down Cake. I often like to substitute up to 1 cup of whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour for an equal measure of the all-purpose flour which give the muffins a nice wholesome flavor.
1 20 ounce can pineapple slices (in juice)
¾ cup (12 tablespoons) brown sugar
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 cups all-purpose flour (or mixture of whole wheat and white)
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon cardamom
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon grated or ground nutmeg
2 large eggs
1 cup milk, cream, or half & half
2⁄3 cup sugar or packed light brown sugar
1⁄2 cup vegetable oil or butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
1. Remove 6 whole slices of pineapple and let drain on a paper towel lined plate. Reserve the remaining pineapple for another use.
2. Preheat oven to 400°F and adjust rack to middle position. Lightly spray standard muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray.
3. Spoon 2 teaspoons of melted butter into each muffin cup. Sprinkle each with 1 tablespoon of brown sugar. Break each whole pineapple slice into 4 equal pieces. Place 2 pieces of pineapple over brown sugar/butter fitting each slice with the curve of the muffin cup; set aside
4. Whisk together flour, baking powder, cardamom, nutmeg, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
5. In a medium bowl whisk together eggs, milk, sugar, oil (or melted butter) and vanilla.
6. Gently stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just to combine (do not overmix). Divide the batter evenly over pineapple mixture using large spoon or ice cream scoop.
7. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in 1 or 2 of the muffins comes out clean, about Let cool for 2 to 3 minutes and then invert muffins onto wire rack or kitchen towel. Let cool, pineapple side up, until ready to serve – warm or at room temperature.