THE BAR EXAM IS OVER! THE BAR EXAM IS OVER! (UNLESS I DIDN’T PASS BUT WE WON’T THINK ABOUT THAT RIGHT NOW.)
Sorry, I’ve been doing a lot of practice questions recently, and I found that when I would read these questions my brain liked to speak in all caps. (For example, “YOU ARE ESTOPPED FROM MAKING THAT CLAIM, JERKFACE” or “HEY DETECTIVE STABLER, THAT’S A @#$%^&* CUSTODIAL INTERROGATION, ARE THERE SOME WARNINGS YOU’D LIKE TO GIVE FIRST?”) It might take me awhile to return to normal. You know, as normal as I ever was.
In anticipation of my triumphant return to this cozy little virtual kitchen, I conjured up a cake recipe one night shortly before the exam when I probably should have been studying. It’s an upside-down cake (to match my priorities). I love upside-down cakes because there’s a big “ta-DAH!” at the end when you turn them out of the pan. And couldn’t life always use a little bit more “ta-DAH”?
This cake would be vegan but for the honey, because I guess honey isn’t vegan, right? You could always replace the honey with sugar, maple syrup, agave, or some combination. I’ve just been wanting some honey-flavored cake ever since I saw a commercial for that new Winnie the Pooh movie. I took the recipe for the bottom part pretty much verbatim from Eat, Drink, and be Vegan, which is magnificent, FYI. There is a whole hummus chapter. A whole chapter!
(File photo. I like to pose with all my favorite cookbooks.)
Here’s the bottom, soon to be the top:
I greased the pan, traced and cut a circle of parchment paper to line it, and greased the paper for easy removal and minimal fruit-stickage. Once the plums, sugar, and almonds are in place, mix up your batter, pour it carefully over the fruit so as to not disturb your pretty arrangement, and get that business in the oven!
When you’re ready to turn it out, get some heavy-duty oven mitts and a pretty plate. Put the plate on top of the pan, flip, and carefully peel off the parchment paper.
Lovely! AAAAAAAHHHH THIS IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN STUDYING. The recipe is below. Have a glorious weekend…..and congrats to all of you that just survived the bar (and those of you in other states that are aaaaaalmost done)!
Plum Upside-Down Cake (serves about eight)
- 2 plums, sliced into wedges (I would err on the side of under-ripe, since you’ll be baking them)
- 1/4 c. brown sugar (or a little less)
- 1/4 c. slivered almonds
- 1 c. flour (I used all-purpose, but I bet you could use whole wheat pastry flour for a more wholesome, breakfast-y result)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 c. almond milk
- 1/2 c. honey
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 1/2 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan, line it with parchment paper, and grease the paper as well. (Better safe than sorry, I say.) Arrange the plum slices in the bottom of the pan, and sprinkle with the almonds and brown sugar. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a larger bowl, whisk together the almond milk, honey, vanilla, oil, and lemon juice. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, and whisk until smooth. Pour the cake batter on top of the plums, and tilt the pan a little bit to distribute evenly. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes (mine got a little toasty-looking on top so I draped a piece of foil over it for the last 10 or so). Let the cake cool for 5-10 minutes, run a knife around the edges to loosen it, turn it out onto a plate, and peel off the parchment paper. Mine was still a little gooey in the middle, but in a good sort of way.