Sunday, April 13, 2014

Maple Walnut Upside-Down Cake

Maple-Walnut Upside-Down Cake.

I'm sharing Amy Traverso's Blog today.  It looked so appealing and her photos were so nice. 

Today’s weather is such an improvement over the past, oh, five months, that I want to fire up the grill and eat corn on the cob. But rather than get ahead of myself, I’m opting to share a terrific maple-pecan cake recipe that I discovered in a 1975 cookbook called Treasured Recipes from Early New England Kitchens.

Maple-pecan upside-down cake
Maple-pecan upside-down cake
The book was written by Marjorie Page Blanchard and published as a joint venture between Garden Way Publishing and Harrington’s, the longstanding purveyor of Vermont hams, Cheddar, maple syrup, and the like.
IMG_5720The recipe itself is simple: Pour maple syrup into a cake pan and sprinkle with nuts (the original calls for walnuts; I used pecans). Make a batter using the conventional creaming method, pour into the pan, spread carefully and bake. I made a few tweaks (increasing the nuts, decreasing the sugar and baking powder) and found the recipe to be a real charmer, perfect for an early spring dessert.
Maple-Nut Upside-Down Cake
The charm of this cake lies in its tender, buttery crumb and rich maple-nut flavor. Because it’s so similar to pineapple upside-down cake, we wondered if we’d miss the addition of the tart fruit, but it’s perfectly delicious on its own.
Total time: 1 hour, 10 minutes; hands-on time: 20 minutes
Yield: 8 servings
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup roughly chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • Garnish: whipped cream, maple syrup
Preheat your oven to 350° and set a rack to the middle position. Generously butter a 9-inch cake pan. Pour the maple syrup into the pan and sprinkle all over with the nuts.
Maple syrup and nuts in bottom of pan.

In the bowl of a standing mixer (or, if using hand-held beaters, in a large bowl), beat the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each. Add the vanilla and beat to combine.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk, and mixing after each.
Using a large spoon, add the batter to the prepared cake pan in large dollops.
Add dollops of batter to the prepared pan.

Use a spatula (preferably an offset spatula) to carefully spread the batter around the pan and over the syrup and nuts. It helps to dip the spatula in warm water so the batter doesn’t stick to it.
Spread batter over maple syrup and nuts.
Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let the cake stand for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and turn the cake out onto a serving plate. Serve topped with whipped cream and a drizzle of maple syrup.

Amy Traverso


Amy Traverso


Senior lifestyle editor Amy Traverso oversees Yankee's Food and Home & Garden departments and contributes articles to the magazine. Amy's book, The Apple Lover's Cookbook (W.W. Norton), won an International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) cookbook award for the category American.  Photos by Amy Traverso.

I made the cake today.  I used walnuts instead of pecans. It was delicious as a coffee cake for breakfast, but it would be equally good as a dessert.

Here's my cake:
Maple Walnut-Upside Down Cake.

1 comment:

  1. Pat:
    We're so happy that you found Amy's post on We'd love for you to continue to tell people about this tasty recipe, but with the following changes in order to adhere to best practice:
    - Keep your intro ("I'm sharing Amy Traverso's blog today. It looked so appealing and her photos were so nice.")
    - Add the link to Amy's blog (not the entire post as it is now)
    - Remove the pictures and images that are copied from Amy's blog

    You have our permission to use one of Amy's photos on your site at the top of your blog, but please list this photo credit: Photo Credit: Amy Traverso and Yankee Magazine.

    If you have any questions, please email me at

    Heather A.