July 20, 2023

Caramelized Pineapple Tropical Loaf ~ #TheCakeSliceBakers

This Caramelized Pineapple Tropical Loaf cake packs quite the punch of flavor. Caramelizing
the pineapple enhances its sweetness and concentrates the flavor, the rums takes it up a notch, 
and the toasted coconut adds a wonderful nuttiness and a hint of  crunch.

The Cake Slice Bakers continue to bake through - Gâteau: The Surprising Simplicity of French Cakes by Aleksandra Crapanzano this year. Aleksandra, a James Beard Award–winning writer, shares her secrets of the cakes Parisians like to bake at home. Recipes such as a simple yogurt cake, a surprisingly easy Bûche De Noël, and Walnut Pear and Roquefort Madeleines will show you the surprising simplicity of a French cake.

The Cake Slice Bakers are a group of dedicated bakers who all love cake. Each year we choose a new cake-centric cookbook and bake our way through it. Every month we are given 3 choices and on the 20th day of each month we reveal what we have chosen on our blogs. This month's choices were Caramelized Pineapple Tropical Loaf, Raspberry Clafoutis, and Alsatian Bacon, Caramelized Onion and Gruyère Loaf. Since I live on a tropical island it only made sense that I should pick the cake with pineapple in it.

This loaf cake is relatively quick and easy to put together. I do suggest that when making the caramelized pineapple that you at least double the amounts as you are going to want to eat it with a spoon, and you need to save some for the cake. This is the first cake I have made where powdered sugar is used when creaming the butter and sugar.  On the positive note it certainly cuts down the time needed for the two ingredients to come together, but I don't think I am a fan of it because one of the main reason you cream butter and sugar together is to add small pockets of air to the batter to give it more delicate texture.  If you use powdered sugar instead of granulated sugar, you are missing this crucial step and I feel that the cake was kind of heavier than my usual loaf cakes. I'm also not sure why you need to fold in the flour and baking powder as this is not a sponge cake.  I followed the recipe and did fold it in, but I don't think this was really needed and next time I would just add it to the stand mixer for both it and the caramelized pineapple. I also did not add the coconut, mostly because one of my daughters is not a fan and also because I wanted to buy a particular type of coconut and forgot to do so - oh well, next time.

As you can see from the photos I decided to dry some pineapple slices and turn them into flowers.  It is actually quite easy to do and you can also add color if you want. It is recommended that you use a mandoline to get nice thin slices but mine was two small for the size of the pineapple so I just used my santoku knife to cut the slices as thin as I could.  I could definitely use some additional practice in coloring the center but in fairness I was using a toothpick so I didn't stain my hands, so a small paintbrush would have been perfect.  I was also really impatient and should have let the flowers dry more during the last step, but I was racing against the sun to take some photos.  I also decided to frost my loaf with a mixture of powdered sugar and some of the juice from the pineapple.   I know a lot of bloggers don't show their mistakes, but I could not stop laughing at mine so here it is.  One of the pineapple slices was cut a little thicker so it needed a little more drying time, so I turned off the oven and left it in there.  Then about an hour later I turned the oven back on again at a high temperature to warm up some pizza, forgetting that the pineapple slice was still in there.  This was the result, completely inedible, but there is something pretty about the colors and I'm calling it my lava flower. 🤣

Caramelized Pineapple Tropical Loaf 

Pineapple ~
  • 30g (2 tablespoons) butter
  • 30g (2 tablespoons) dark brown sugar
  • 225g (1 cup) diced fresh pineapple or frozen pineapple, thawed
  • 15ml (1 tablespoon) dark rum or 5ml (1 teaspoon) vanilla extract
  • zest of 2 limes
Cake ~
  • 115g (8 tablespoons) butter, at room temperature
  • 130g (1 cup) powdered sugar
  • 20ml (1 tablespoon) honey
  • 50g (¼ cup) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 15ml (1 tablespoon) heavy cream
  • 15ml (1 tablespoon) milk
  • 1½ cups cake or all-purpose flour
  • 10g (2 teaspoons) baking powder
  • 1 cup dried, flaked coconut, toasted
Pineapple ~
  1. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add sugar, stirring until it is completely dissolved.
  3. Add pineapple and stir to coat, continuing to sauté until sugar turns golden and edges of pineapple begin to darken, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in rum and lime zest; set aside to cool slightly.
Cake ~
Preheat oven to 170℃ (335℉).
  1. Spray a 23 x 13cm (9-by-5-inch) loaf pan with baking spray, lining the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. Spread coconut on a baking sheet and toast in the oven, about 5 minutes; set aside to cool.
  3. Using a stand mixer, cream together butter and confectioners’ sugar until smooth and fluffy.
  4. With the mixer running add honey and granulated sugar, beating to combine.
  5. Add eggs one by one, stopping the beater to scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition.
  6. Add the heavy cream and milk, and beat until smooth.
  7. Fold in cake flour and baking powder. 
  8. Fold in caramelized pineapple and its sugar-butter.
  9. Fold in toasted coconut.
  10. Pour batter into the prepared loaf tin and bake for about 50 minutes, or until a cake-tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  11. Let cool to room temperature.

Each month The Cake Slice Bakers are offered a selection of cakes from the current book we are baking through. This year it is Gâteau: The Surprising Simplicity of French Cakes by Aleksandra Crapanzano. We each choose one cake to bake, and then on the 20th - never before - we all post about our cake on our blogs. There are a few rules that we follow, but the most important ones are to have fun and enjoy baking & eating cakes!

Follow our Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest pages where you can find all of our cakes, as well as inspiration for many other cakes. You can also click on the links below to take you to each of our cakes. If you have a blog and are interested in joining The Cake Slice Bakers and baking along with us, please send an email to thecakeslicebakers at gmail dot com for more details.

The Cake Slice Bakers also have a new Facebook group called The Cake Slice Bakers and Friends. This group is perfect for those who do not have a blog but want to join in the fun and bake through this book.

It is a new year and a new book - Gâteau: The Surprising Simplicity of French Cakes - and our choices for July 2023 were ~

Caramelized Pineapple Tropical Loaf

Raspberry Clafoutis

Alsatian Bacon, Caramelized Onion and Gruyère Loaf


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