Polamalu Upside Down Cake

Much like today's game, this cake was kind of a delicious mess. It started promisingly, looked and smelled great. Then by the end of the first 25 minutes in the oven, I smelled something burning. It turns out the caramel topping was slowly leaking through my springform pan, onto the bottom of the oven and smoking like crazy. I quickly slipped a baking sheet under the cake pan and scooped out the charred mess. 

Once the cake finished baking, I found that my carefully constructed mango-cycloids had shifted around a little as the cake was leaking from the pan. Luckily, the cake itself turned out light, fluffy and delicious! It wasn't pretty, but I think this one goes in the books as a win. 

This week, the Steelers wore their "bumble bee" throwback jerseys and socks - so did I.

Highlights of today's game against the Detroit Lions would be the two Antonio Brown TDs on the first two offensive drives, the Will Allen interception and then Jerricho Cotchery TD in the last quarter and... they played Renegade TWICE!! 

What is Renegade (other than a sweet Styx song)? Some might say it's the unofficial Steelers fight song (that is, after the actual Steelers fight song). Others might say it's more than a song - it's an event that occurs during Steelers home games that makes the crowd go wild. Renegade happens at Heinz Field during TV timeouts, usually in the third or fourth quarter when the fans need to rally. And today, they played it twice - once after the Suisham field goal in the third quarter, when the offense failed to make it into the end zone from the one yard line on three consecutive tries, and again, after the offensive drive that spanned the field and lead to a Will Johnson touchdown in the fourth (making the score, 30-27, Detroit).

I had a request not too long ago for another Polamalu recipe. There was the Pizza Polamalu-Ma'afala back in June, but Troy deserves a snack to himself. 

When I'm creating multiple Stiller Snacks per week, I usually pawn the treats off on my coworkers or friendly neighborhood bartenders at the corner bar. Last week they helped me finish off the batch of Rocky Bleier Road Doughnuts. It was one such bartender who made the suggestion for this week's snack. She told me she recently made a cranberry upside down cake that was sweet and tart. I thought that was perfect - Polamalu pineapple upside down cake! She recommended that I add some tropical mango into the huddle too. Brilliant. 

One word of advice - use a round (or square) cake pan for this recipe. The springform just can't hold all of that pineappley, mangoey, caramelly goodness. 

Polamalu Upside Down Cake
Recipe adapted from Simply Recipes

For the topping
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup light brown sugar
10 oz canned pineapple rings or chunks (half a can)
1/2 ripe mango, peeled and diced (cut into hypocycloid stars, if you like)

For the cake
1 1/2 cups flour
6 tbsp cake flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 3/4 cup sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
4 eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup sour cream
10 oz canned pineapple chunks or rings
1/2 ripe mango, peeled and diced

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Melt 1 stick butter in saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir in brown sugar to combine. Once combined, remove from heat. Arrange fruit topping in the bottom of cake pan, then pour caramel over fruit to cover bottom of pan. 

Stir flours, baking powder and salt together in medium bowl. Cream together butter and sugar in large mixing bowl with hand mixer on medium speed. Add in eggs, one at a time, scraping down sides in between additions. Mix in vanilla extract. Mix dry ingredients in three additions, adding sour cream in between. Stir in remaining mango and pineapple pieces. Gently pour cake batter into pan, over top of caramel and fruit topping. 

Bake for 60-75 minutes until a toothpick comes out cleanly. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then invert onto cooling rack. 

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