For the cake:
For the topping:
- 2 c (8 oz) Better Batter All-Purpose Flour
- 1/2 c cornmeal
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 12 tsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, or dairy free alternative
- 1 1/4 c granulated sugar
- 4 eggs or 1 cup aquafaba
- 1 c whole milk or dairy free alternative
- 4 tsp fresh grated orange zest
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 8 Tbl (1 stick) unsalted butter or dairy free alternative
- 1/3 c brown sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- Pinch of salt
- 1 Tbl fresh thyme leaves, plus additional sprigs for garnish
- 1 large orange, sliced 1/8-inch thick
You will need a cast-iron skillet for this recipe. Mine is a deep-dish enameled 10-inch skillet and it worked nicely.
Preheat and prepare.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Strip the thyme leaves off the stems and have them ready for the topping. Set aside.
Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, 3/4 tsp salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
Make the batter.
In a large bowl beat the butter with a handheld electric mixer on high for 1 minute. Reduce speed to low and add granulated sugar and beat well, scraping the sides of the bowl with a spatula often. Add eggs one at a time, beating well to incorporate. Alternatively, add half of the milk, then half of the flour mixture, beating on low to combine. Repeat, adding in remaining milk then remaining flour mixture until incorporated, about 1 minute. Stir in orange zest and vanilla. Set batter aside while you prepare the topping.
Heat the cast iron skillet on the stove top 1-2 minutes oven medium heat. Add the remaining 8 Tbl butter and stir until the butter is fully melted. Whisk in the brown sugar, 1 1/2 tsp vanilla, and pinch of salt. Bring sugar mixture to a boil and cook 1-2 minutes of until thickened. Remove from heat.
Stir in the thyme leave then arrange the orange slices on the bottom of the skillet. Spoon the thick batter over the oranges and spread evenly.
Bake the cake in the cast-iron skillet for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. I tented mine with foil about 25 minutes into the baking to keep the cake from overbrowning. Remove from oven and let cool in the skillet 5 minutes. Place a serving plate upside down over the cake and invert, releasing the cake onto the plate. Use potholders for this - it's hot! Cool 20 minutes before cutting. Serve warm or at room temperature. Garnish with fresh orange slides and thyme sprigs. Makes 8-10 servings.
Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens