I am homesick. I miss my Mum, the brother-sisterhood with helping hands, the hot weather in Bali, the humble daily routines we used to have from dawn to dawn, the fragrant offerings our maid always makes on her little statue to pray at the bungalow, and I long to taste Indonesian authentic cuisine again.
And I'm getting mellow.
Anyway, the pineapple I bought for this very occasion, being mellow, is my contribution for A Taste of Yellow which is hosted by Barbara of Winos and Foodies. Then, what should I do with it? My being homesick, the pineapple at hand, I certainly want something to remind me of special things I have eaten at home. I love to think being in my aunt's kitchen, eating warm fragrant jasmine rice with a bowl of cassava leaves' curry, fried tempeh, or probably a fried drumstick which is marinated with the mixed of corianders, garlic, and tamarind paste, and, this is what I would have been thinking a lot, a good drop of sambal nenas (diced pineapple with hot chilli sauce). Oh yum!
Now that I can't eat sambal (chilli sauce or paste) that hot anymore, I am thinking about something delightful, a combination of pineapple and coconut, perhaps. This is then I arrived to this very cake. My own upside-down pineapple and coconut cake, drizzled with caramel sauce.
In Subang, West Java, when I was waiting for a transportation to take me back to Bandung (the capital city of West Java, Indonesia), I went on the side of the road where there were some locals selling their products. There was a huge pile of pineapples which was appeared green with a hint of yellowish color along the stream of the eyes and they were just picked from the village down below the hill. We were allowed to try some of the fresh ones, and they tasted heaven! So sweet, juicy, and crunchy.
The appearance of the eyes are larger and the fruits themselves are fatter than those I'd seen in Prabumulih, South Sumatra but the tastes are the same. Prabumulih is a small town, about an hour and a half drive from Palembang (acting as the capital city of South Sumatra) where a lifestyle is maintained to be oil-oriented. When you come to Prabumulih, there will be a big statue of pineapple at the border which is said to be the town of pineapples.
Pineapples in New Zealand are imported from the Philippines. I don't know if there are any locals grown?
Anyway, here's my upside-down cake. I don't know if I measured them exactly as I just tend to throw things in the bowl, but what I've got here is rather high sponge and moist. I stew the pineapple first. You can use canned pineapple rings if you want, but they won't give you a good yellowish color as they tend to be paler after being stored in the can for so long, and goodness knows what they do with them before they put them in there. To support the LiveStrong as to suport the healthy lifestyle, I suppose using the fresh pineapple is much better. But anyway, it's up to you.
Pineapple and Coconut Upside-Down Cake with Caramel Sauce
1 pineapple, slice 5 reasonable thickness.
Boil a cup of water, put the slices in, simmer for 20-30 minutes. Set aside the rings and reserve the syrup. (You can add a few throw of sugar when you stew the pineapple if you like).
150g sugar (add more if you prefer sweeter version),
½ tsp vanilla essence,
170-200g flour (sifted),
100-120g unsalted butter, melted,
1 cup coconut,
2 tsp milk
Preheat the oven to 170C. Arrange the pineapple rings on the base of 20cm baking tin which is lined with baking paper. Put the eggs, sugar and vanilla in a bowl of an electric mixer, then beat until thick and pale. Fold in the flour alternatively with the melted butter until well mixed, then add in the coconut and milk. Pour the batter in the tin. Smooth on top with spatula and bake for 30-40 minutes. Serve warm with caramel sauce. A dollop of cream is also good.
I made the sauce from the reserved syrup from the stewed pineapple and throw in a good cup of sugar, a good cup of brown sugar, a drizzle of golden syrup, a drop of butter and a drop of vanilla essence. Just heat until golden brown, drizzle immediately on to the cake.