Nantucket Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

Yesterday was my mom's birthday. Now that she has made it into her nineties, every birthday is precious. We celebrated by baking her favorite cake and then watching the sun set at Turtle Beach. Even though a giant cloud came and covered up the sun, we were able to watch a group of young surfers attempt to ride the rough waves. 

We discovered this Nantucket Cranberry Cake at Trader Joe's, where it appears seasonally along with all their other cranberry products. If you don't feel like baking one yourself, keep an eye out for this in the frozen aisle. My mom was very unhappy when it disappeared from the shelves, so I hunted around for a recipe. 

I found one on the King Arthur Flour website that sounded like it would perfectly mimic the Trader Joe's cake that I knew she loved. King Arther Flour has a fantastic website with loads of recipes I am dying to try. I made this cake for Mother's Day, following the recipe exactly, and we decided it was a bit too sweet. The natural tartness of the cranberries wasn't shining through. This time I reduced the sugar in the batter by half and also added more butter to the upside-down filling. I think the results hit the spot!

Although this is really an upside-down cake, I served it as a cobbler. I thought it would be too difficult and messy to try to flip it. Either way, it's delicious.


2 TB butter, melted

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen) (I used an entire bag!)

Into a 10-inch pie pan or 9x9 square pan, pour melted butter and top with cranberries and walnuts. Sprinkle sugar over the top. Set aside and preheat oven to 350F. 

12 TB butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1 cup flour (I used all purpose)

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and beat until smooth. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until completely combined. Pour batter over the cranberry mixture and spread all the way to the corners. Bake at 350F for 40-45 minutes or until slightly browned on top. Remove from oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before serving. Delicious warm or at room temperature.