No two words quite strike the emotional food chord in me like “Salted Caramel”. Merely saying those two heavenly words, makes my head swirl with countless dessert possibilities and my mouth salivate at the though of putting a spoonful of that precious nectar in my mouth. Ever since I first had it poured over vanilla bean ice cream when I was a child, my love affair with salted caramel has only grown and grown.
For me salted caramel is the nectar of the gods, and there is no better pairing than adding to a cake with… Nectarines. Fear not. I’m just being fancy. Beautiful, ripe, juicy peaches work equally as well in this recipe. Nectarines are native to provinces in China, and though they are sweet like their Peachy cousins, they have a slightly more taut and acidic taste making them perfect for baking. Like peaches, nectarines do not ripen after being picked, so when you’re at your local grocery store be sure to pick ready ripened ones. Ripe nectarines should be firm but a little squishy too.
If you are a fan of all things sweet and savoury then this… this is THE recipe for you
I picked nectarines over peaches for this because I don’t like fuzz. No… I have nothing against police or neo-liberal women types. I just don’t enjoy the fuzziness of peaches. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE peaches but mostly when they have been peeled or have been made into fresh peach ice cream. Think of nectarines as the freshly waxed, smooth skinned cousin of the peach. This means you can simply slice them and use them in this recipe.
The recipe also calls for buttermilk which should be found at most major grocery stores but, sometimes can be a nightmare to get a hold of, especially if you’re not from the Untied States. If so there are quick and easy step to make you’re own buttermilk with just regular milk, The Kitchn has some great tips here. Now where were we? Right the epic combination of nectarines and salted caramel… If you are a fan of all things sweet and savoury then this… this is THE recipe for you. Technically its simple you just have to follow the directions step by step and by golly you will not be disappointed. The resulting cake is both sweet and moist with that delicate kick of salted caramel topping it off. So let’s get to baking.
Prep Time 40mins
Cooking Time approximately 55mins
4 nectarines (sliced into inch thick wedges)
300g cups sugar
1 tsp fine salt
245g cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
115g unsalted butter (room temperature)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Begin by preheating the oven to 350F/180°c, gas mark 4 and line and brush your chosen cake tin with baking parchment and a generous dose of butter.
1. In a medium saucepan mix together 128g sugar, 1/2 tsp fine salt and 1 1/2 tbs of water. Start stirring until the mixture resembles wet sand. Leave to simmer over medium to high heat.
2. Swirl, but DO NOT stir the mixture as it cooks until it has a warm amber colour which will start to present it self after 5 minutes. Once the mixture resembles this, remove from heat and pour immediately into your prepared cake pan. The caramel hardens quickly so you have to work fast over the next bit.
3. Arrange your nectarines in a spiral pattern if using a round tin or in alternating four rows for a square pan. Set your pan aside and leave the nectarines to cool in the salted caramel.
4. In a large bowl, add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and the remaining 1/2 tsp fine salt and whisk together until combines.
5. In a separate bowl beat the butter with the remaining 170g of cup sugar on medium to high speed for approximately 3 minutes. The mixture should be light and fluffy. Begin beating the eggs one at a time. Once the mixture is well combined add the vanilla extract and mix in well.
6. Turn your mixer to a low to medium speed and begin adding your flour mixture in small batches alternating each one with equal amounts of buttermilk. Do not over mix the mixture, it should be well mixed but only just incorporated.
7. Pour the batter over the nectarines and place in the oven to bake. This should take approximately 55 minutes depending on the heat of your oven. If you find that the top of the cake is browning too quickly cover loosely with aluminium foil. When ready the cake should be a golden brown and your testing toothpick should come out clean.
8. Remove from the oven and let rest for 15minutes before turning the cake over leaving it to cool completely.
Cut into equal slices and serve this simply delectable cake! If you are going to make this heavenly cake I’d love to see how they turned out! Tag me on instagram @cakesthebiscuit and hashtag #cakesthebiscuit or follow and tweet me @cakes_biscuit