Chocolate Almond Upside-down Cake
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 1/4 cups sliced or slivered almonds, lightly toasted
- For the cake:
- 1 1/4 cups cake flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder, preferably Dutch-process
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) cool unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Thickly butter a 10-inch round cake pan. Pour the melted butter into the cake pan and swirl to coat the bottom then sprinkle in the brown sugar. Drizzle in the honey and sprinkle the almonds evenly over the bottom.
To make the cake batter, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together three times (this is to make the cake extra-light). Cream the butter in a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment until smooth and fluffy. Add the sugar and mix. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing after each addition. Beat until fluffy and light. With the mixer running at low speed, add a third of the dry ingredients and mix. Add half of the buttermilk and mix. Add another third of the dry ingredients and mix. Add the remaining buttermilk and mix. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until smooth. Pour the batter into the pan.
Bake until set in the center and springy, about 25 to 35 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and immediately invert it onto a serving platter. Let sit inverted for 5 minutes so the caramel can soak into the cake a bit. Then remove the pan. If the topping is sticking to the pan, warm the pan surface on a burner to loosen the caramel.