Gingerbread Apple Upside-Down Cake
Note: This has a LOT of batter. The recipe calls for a 10" pan. I baked it in a 9 x 3 inch pan, and I think it would go way up to the top (and might overflow) a 9 x 2 inch pan. So, if you don't have the recommended 10" pan and use a 9 x 2, I wouldn't add all the batter (make a little mini cake to go along with this cake!)
Make the topping: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease a 10-inch
cake pan (I used a 9" x 3 cake pan). Melt butter in a small saucepan. Add brown sugar and simmer
over moderate heat, stirring until thick. I forgot to add the salt but Smitten Kitchen says to swirl it in. The New York Times recipe doesn't caramelize the sugar and butter in a pot; I really liked the nice caramel flavor. Remove
from heat and pour into the bottom of your cake pan. Make circles of
overlapping apple slices on top of the caramel.
Make the batter: Using a mixer with paddle attachment, beat 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter and the sugar on medium-low speed. Increase the speed to high and cream until light and fluffy.
In a bowl, whisk together the egg, molasses, honey and buttermilk. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger and cinnamon. Alternate mixing the flour and molasses mixtures into the butter mixture, adding the next once the last has been incorporated.
Pour the batter into the pan. New York Times says to bake for 45 to 50 minutes (in a 10" pan) or until a
wooden tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. (It took me 65 minutes in a 9 x 3" pan.) Let
cool on a rack for 10 to 15 minutes, then turn out onto a platter.
NY Times suggests serving warm or cool with very softly whipped cream. (I didn't top it with anything...and it was still delicious!!!)