It’s funny sometimes the way recipes progress. There are very few, if any, recipes that we home cooks can really call our own. Even if I’ve made something up on the spur of the moment based on the leftovers in my fridge it’s still a pretty safe bet that someone else has made the exact same thing at some point. Can I say I created it? Sure. But that doesn’t mean it’s original.
Then there is the phenomenon of the “adapted” recipe. Like this one. The original recipe for a Caramelized Apple Upside-Down Cake came from Southern Living magazine in January of 2010. That recipe calls for things like granulated sugar, brown sugar, and white wheat flour. Then Carrie Vitt from Deliciously Organic got her hands on the recipe and replaced those refined ingredients with sucanat, maple syrup, and whole wheat pastry flour. Go Carrie.
Now, I get my hands on it and I have to convert it to gluten free since I’m going to be serving it with The Boy around. And, since I want the boy to eat it I have to remove the pecans, swap in apple cider instead of the brandy, and then just for fun I up the number of apples because, in my mind if a little is good more will be better. Lastly, the recipe calls for the whole thing to be cooked in a 12 inch skillet and I don’t have one, so I adapt the whole thing for a 9 inch cake pan.
The texture of the original was, I am sure, different. It appears from the pictures on Southern Living and Carrie’s site that the cake part almost is reminiscent of a crumb cake base. Mine, being gluten free, has a slightly different texture: heavier, moister, and less sweet than traditional cake. Is it the same? No, it’s different. Is it a radically “new” recipe? No, it’s not that either. It is what it is and it is actually quite delicious, pure and simple.