Brown Sugar and Butter Plum Upside Down Cake – for Breakfast or Dessert

Persimmon slices add a splash of fall orange to a breakfast that will get you ready for weekend chores. 

For most of the year, we rely on the fresh fruits and vegetables that make their way up to Point Hope by way of  the school and the Native Store. This means most of the fresh fruit we get is of the type that travels well – apples, pears and occasionally kiwis. This week, purple plums arrived. They were a bit on the hard side, so instead of gobbling up our coveted fresh fruit right away, Jack and I set them aside to ripen with thoughts of baking something interesting.

The result was this scrumptious upside down plum cake featuring ample amounts of brown sugar and butter. A friend returning to Point Hope from the big city (Anchorage) brought back fresh persimmons, Jack fried eggs seasoned with his special blend of Italian herbs, and breakfast was on. This cake went equally well with homemade extra rich vanilla ice cream for an after dinner dessert.

Brown Sugar and Butter Plum Upside Down Cake


  • 12 tbsp softened unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 5 medium plums, pitted and sliced
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 eggs
  • 1  1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1  1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup whole milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place 4 tablespoons of butter in an 8-inch square cake pan and heat in oven until butter is melted.
  3. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle brown sugar evenly on bottom of pan.
  4. Arrange plum slices on top of brown sugar and set aside.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, cream remaining butter with sugar and lemon juice. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined.
  6. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
  7. Add about 1/3 of flour mixture to butter mixture along with about 1/3 of the milk. Mix together. Repeat with second 1/3 and third 1/3 of flour and milk.
  8. Pour cake batter over plums. Spread evenly.
  9. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
  10. Let cool 10 minutes.
  11. Invert onto serving dish. Let cool slightly before serving.

Recipe adapted from the Cake Duchess.

2 thoughts on “Brown Sugar and Butter Plum Upside Down Cake – for Breakfast or Dessert

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