Apple Crumble Upside Down Cake and a Fall Giveaway

I’ll tell you one of my guilty obsessions this past summer: Rachel Zoe. [I know. Heehee.] For the past two hours, instead of writing up the recipe for this Apple Crumble Upside Down Cake, I had to fix this website due to my BIG mistake of upgrading WordPress (my blogging platform). Yup, it screwed up the layout. All I could mutter was one of Rachel’s infamous phrases: I DIE. Thankfully, I was able to fix everything back to normal, and I still have enough time to give you a recipe and other fun stuff. Yay.

Remember the Quick Apple Crumble with Cranberries from a couple of days ago? You can make it into something else…something even more wonderful that it already is:
Apple Crumble Upside Down Cake
Apple Crumble Upside Down Cake

Four taste-testers don’t lie: this is some heavenly combination! A layer of light and moist cake underneath a generous overlay of sweet apple chunks and plumped up dried cranberries, then the coating of  crunchy, buttery cornmeal streusel… I mean, could it get any better than that?

All it took was a bite...
All it took was a bite...

When you think about it, it’s a cake, that’s a pie, that’s a crisp! Haha. Oh, and  just one of the many ways to enjoy the gifts of the Fall season that I so love.

Speaking of Fall...we’re excited to collaborate with Vault Communications and Aloutte Cheese for a fantastic Fall Wine and Cheese Party Giveaway! It’s been a while since we’ve thrown a contest, oh dear. But check it out!

Gourmet Fall Cheese Tasting Party Giveaway

  • Mariposa Gourmet Two-Toned  Wooden Cheese Board w/ Wine & Cheese Access. (Board is made of Natural Wood.)
  • Cheese Markers
  • Customized Cheese Rating Cards w/ Pens (Party of 10) – customized with your name and date/year of party.
  • Alouette recipe cards for entertaining
  • Alouette coupons for Baby Brie, Spreadable and Crumbles
  • Slow Down & Savour Tips

Let's Slow Down & Savour Life Wine & Cheese Giveaway

Let's Slow Down & Savour Life Wine & Cheese Giveaway

That’s right, you’ll get all of these lovely items (a $150 value). Wine, wine glass and fruits not included. ** IMPORTANT: PRIZES CAN ONLY BE SHIPPED IN THE U.S. **

To enter, just answer this question in the comments section:

How do you slow down and savour life’s moments?

If you tweet about it, let us know in the comments. Each legitimate and unique comment to this post qualify as one entry.

Contest ends October 29, at 12 noon. Good luck!

[Contest disclosure: We have received the same items from Alouette Cheese, c/o Vault Communications. We have no advertising/sponsorship commitments with either company.]

Oh, and here’s the recipe:

Apple Crumble Upside Down Cake

It’s a cake, that’s a pie, that’s a crisp– light, moiDownload the print-ready PDF recipe for Apple Crumble Upside Down Cakest cake underneath a generous layer of sweet apple chunks and cranberries, sprinkled with the crunchy and buttery cornmeal streusel.

Ingredients [Serves 8]

Apple Filling

  • 3 medium-sized apples, peeled, quartered, chopped into ¼ x ½  x ½ -inch chunks and fills about 5 cups. Use what you have on hand or your preferred variety. (I used Okanagan Fuji apples.)
  • 4 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • pinch kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon triple sec liqueur (optional)

Crumble/Streusel topping

  • 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow cornmeal
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted


  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon yellow cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Place the rack in the lower-middle position and preheat oven to 425°F.

2. Butter bottom and sides of a 9-inch round, 2-inch-deep nonstick cake pan; set aside.

3. For the apple filling

  • Mix brown sugar, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl. Toss the apple chunks in it.
  • Melt butter over high heat on a Dutch oven until it begins to turn amber in color and the milky froth from the butter has almost cleared (don’t allow it to burn).
  • Add the apples into the pot and reduce heat to medium-high. Stir with a wooden spoon and cook for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the cranberries and stir. Cover for another 5 minutes or until the apples begin to soften and break down in the steam. Juice will collect on the bottom of the pan.
  • Remove from the heat and pour over a strainer with a large bowl underneath to catch the juice.
  • Pour the juice back into the Dutch oven over high heat and mix it with heavy cream and triple sec liqueur (if used). Stir until the mixture is reduced and thickened. It’s done when you drag your wooden spoon on the bottom of the pan and it leaves a trailing line. Turn off the heat and toss the apples and cranberries in it.
  • Transfer the fruits and any remaining liquid into the prepared cake pan. Lightly press into an even layer. Set aside.

4. For the crumble/streusel topping:

  • Mix flour, brown sugar and cornmeal in a medium bowl with a fork. Drizzle melted butter while continuing to mix it until it forms pea-sized chunks.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the streusel mixture evenly on top of it.
  • Bake it in the pre-heated 425°F oven for 5 minutes. Watch closely once you hit the 4-min mark. It might start to burn depending on your baking sheet.
  • Take it out of the oven and set aside to cool on a trivet for 5 minutes. Toss the crumble with a small spoon to prevent it from burning if it is already getting dark. Set aside.

5. Decrease oven temperature to 350°F with the rack in the same position.

6. For the cake:

  • Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • Beat the brown sugar and eggs in a large bowl until thick and homogenous, for about 45 seconds.
  • Slowly beat in butter until thoroughly combined. Add heavy cream and vanilla and continue to mix. Pour flour mixture and blend until just combined.
  • Pour batter into the cake pan and spread evenly over fruit.
  • Bake in the pre-heated oven until cake is golden grown, about 35 to 40 minutes. When you insert a toothpick into the center it will come out clean.
  • Cool pan on wire rack for 20 minutes before running a knife around the sides of the cake pan.
  • Carefully invert cake pan onto a large plate, and allow the cake to cool for another 20 minutes before cutting and serving. Enjoy with some vanilla ice cream, fresh whipped crème or crème fraîche on top.

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  1. Nikki says

    I wake up early enough to watch the sunrise transform the landscape. I love this time of the day – especially when the dogs and husband are still snoozing.

  2. Kristen J says

    I slow down and savour life by drinking a nice glass of wine, sometimes munching on an appetizer, while sitting out on my back porch and watching nature do it’s thing in my semi-wooded backyard. I savour life to the fullest when I’m with my family and friends, and especially on holidays.

  3. says

    OOooh how fun! A cheese tasting party might just be the best entertaining idea ever. Lately, I’ve been needing to do a lot of slowing down and savoring, and I do it in the kitchen as I enjoy cooking or baking after a long day!

  4. says

    Don’t you hate it when the so call important updates end up screwing up everything? That’s why I am so wary of them and they are out so often is so annoying! blah!

    But that cake looks divine! I bet that after just one bite all your problems go away (at least until you have to face the scale! LOL)

    This is being bookmarked right now :)
    .-= Ben´s last blog ..Potato and Poblano Soup =-.

  5. says

    Oh my gosh, the apple cake is fabulous! Great giveaway, too. You don’t need to enter me, since I had a very similar giveaway on my blog, and I’m not supposed to eat cheese, anyway, hehe.

    Good luck to the entrants! :)
    .-= Elle´s last blog ..Sushi, are you mocking me? =-.

  6. Laura says

    I want to savour that cake!!! It looks delish!

    Savouring life is as easy as counting all blessings, big and small, all while enjoying the wind in my hair, my friends company, a great glass of wine or a phenomenal piece of chocolate.

  7. says

    First off, the crumble cake sounds delicious. Secondly, just last night when my pizza party was winding down I was saying that my next party will be a wine and cheese party. Last of all, that question is hard for me to answer right now. I’ve been go go go lately and really need to slow down and savour life. I’ve been enjoying it full steam. I savour life by going hiking in the mountains and going diving in the ocean. Both places you are isolated from the the hustle bustle and crowds of evryday life.
    .-= Wendy´s last blog ..{sms} devil‚Äôs food cake and peanut butter frosting =-.

  8. says

    How do I slow down and savour life‚Äôs moments? I like getting together with friends and laughing. Being busy usually can mean being isolated and doing one’s own thing. Spending time with friends or family renergizes me, especially over a cup of coffee and yummy dessert.

  9. says

    I too am a closet RZ fan, it’s like, unbelievable! Your cake is “just beyond, beyond”. I have 5 little apples waiting for their debut is something yummy, I may try your recipe today!

    How I slow down and savor life’s moments is to sit at the window in my dining nook and have a glass of something or tea and watch the cityscape out there. Living in the city one tends to try to ignore the urbanness of it all most of the time, a self protection device. But sometimes to relax I just look at what is there, and I always see something new, and feel renewed myself!

    Good luck with your contest!
    .-= Heather in SF´s last blog ..Beef Stew with a Twist =-.

  10. Wendy says

    Joy, I love how you write your recipes–they’re SO clear and thorough without being didactic or condescending. I don’t write my own recipes much, but from reading so many food blogs, it seems like that’s a difficult balance to find!

    To slow down–something I know I don’t do enough–all I need to do is step outside my house and look at the unbelievable scenery of NY state. We’re very lucky to live where we do, and too often I see its gorgeousness through a car window on the way to work, wherever work happens to be that day. Oh: silence. Spending so much of my life around music makes me really, really appreciate complete quiet.


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