Right about now, I’m feeling as upside down as this yummy cake because I have to make a decision on whether to keep my current car which I love and have a few things fixed or buy a new car, and if I buy a new car, I think I’m finally going to give in, and get the car of my dreams, which is.. the Nissan 370Z.  I have loved the 370 Z all my life or for as long as I can remember.  Of course, she wasn’t always known as the 370Z, when I first laid eyes on her, she was the Datsun 240Zx, and it was love at first sight.  My aunt owned her and continued to upgrade her through the years, and I fell harder each time.

I wanted to cry when she told me she was getting rid of her, but then she showed up the next day with the Nissan 280 Zx and this time, in addition to the stick shift, she had a computerized dash, like Knight Rider, and I’m totally showing my age, but the same sadness swept over me when we said goodbye to the 280, and the very next day the 300Zx arrived, then the 350Zx, and another 350 when Nissan kept the name, but changed the body style, and then she went away for good, and my aunt retired hers to her collection, and I was heartbroken.

I loved that car, I mean I really loved that car.. the smell of the leather, the stick shift, the way it zipped around on turns, the sound of the engine, the way the dash board lit up.. every time I saw one, I kid you not, my heart skipped a beat, and I still feel that same way today.  Never have I ever loved a car so much.  So why is it, that I still don’t have one of my own, now that they reentered this world a few years ago and went from the 350Z to the 370Z and sometimes known as the “fairlady.. ” Well truth be told, the timing was never quite right..

Although I did spend almost a decade driving a stick shift in her honor, its not every day that a two seater, high performance sports car, with rear wheel drive only, is ideal.

My first brand new car was a sporty car with a standard shift.  I begged, pleaded, and nagged my father half to death, but I was hell bent, even if it meant teaching myself to drive a stick, which I did by the way, after convincing the young salesman that I was just a bit rusty, but after a few spins in the parking lot, he was somehow comfortable letting me take the car onto the highway.  When my father returned from vacation, he wasn’t fully convinced, so we ventured out in a real muscle car.. a fully loaded mustang, and after continous stalling at a light, I had a meltdown, and ran out of the car.. my father was left driving us back to the dealer while I sobed uncontrollably and finally confessed that my standard shift experience was short lived, which he already figured, but he conceded and let me get the car of my dreams (within reason), and as I peeled out of the dealer.. tires, shrieking, in my sporty red Honda Civic EX, the salesman probably thought my father was crazy.  It was only a week later when I proudly announced that I had learned to start on hills in second gear, that my father decided a few lessons were in order, and so we began, and much like the day he taught me how to ride a bike, I happily learned to drive a stick.  Hills were my father’s specialty, he taught me to really listen too and feel the engine instead of looking at the RPM’s, and because of this, I never once wore out a clutch.

My next car was tailored to my then relationship which at the time, had potential to turn into a marriage, thankfully it did not, but never the less, I decided that I needed a more mature car, and I arrived home with a brand new Honda Accord, automatic.  It must have oozed the very essence of maturity because I stepped out of it at the tender age of 27 and my father’s initial reaction was, that’s an older person’s car.. But I was happy, silver was the “in” color, and it looked lovely in silver, plus I finally had leather interior which I grew to loathe, and heated seats, and I could finally drive with my one leg up on the seat, so I was both happy and cool, and that car did eventually follow me down the aisle, but with a totally different guy.  In fact, that same car drove me home to my parent’s house when I finally decided to end the marriage, and after the divorce, I needed to forget about being mature, and look hot.. hence, the black on black Volvo arrived, and he we are today.. faced with my current dilemma, do I keep the Volvo or get the 370Z??!!

I love my Volvo, it’s the perfect size, it’s sleek, sexy, and dark.  It’s fast and on days when I miss a standard shift, I can throw it into tiptronic and manually shift, I mean how incredibly awesome is that??!! But it’s time for a new timing belt.. not cheap, and little things are starting to come about.  Nothing catastrophic, my car runs amazing, but I’m also fortunate in that my father is an experienced mechanic who also does incredible body work, in fact, my dad, once upon a time, did the Starsky & Hutch cars.. now that’s showing some serious age.  Anyway, my point in mentioning this.. my father has been able to fix all these little bumps that have come about with ease which has saved me a fortune in some instances.

The cons to the 370Z.. it’s a two seater, rear wheel drive isn’t too much of a hassle because I work from home, but I will never be able to drive my neice around in it, although my brother in law can drive a stick, so he’s willing to make a hard sacrifice and trade the kid and his SUV for the keys to the 370 on the days I have the little angel.. I mean, how selfless is my brother in law – HA!

Well tomorrow night I’m test driving the 370 and I’m a little nervous, like butterflies in my stomach kind of nervous.. I haven’t driven a standard shift in fifteen years, and shockingly, I’m loving the car in white which I didn’t expect, but will most likely go with black.  Sooo exciting! Okay, now wish me luck peeps and go make this delicious cake, and I’ll let you know how I make out.

Upside Down Pineapple Skillet Cake

serves 10

Ingredients

  • 1 (20 ounce) can pineapple rings (i.e. Libby’s) or 10 rings
  • 13 blackberries, plus 7 more for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup for top + 3 tablespoons for cake
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 3 tablespoons omghee
  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Instructions

  • Spray the cast iron skillet with non stick cooking spray
  • Arrange the fruit however you like, I placed 7 rings on the bottom, and sliced the remaining 3 in half for the sides, then I placed 13 blackberries on top, leaving the remaining 5 for garnish after the cake is done
  • Drizzle 2 tablespoons of maple syrup on top of the fruit
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  • Bake fruit for 10 minutes
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, tapioca flour, coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together
  • In a seperate mixing bowl, using a hand mixer, beat the eggs, vanilla, molasses, remaining 3 tablespoons of mape syrup, and ghee together until well combined
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, using a hand mixer, beat until well combined
  • Add the pineapple juice and continue to beat until batter is smooth
  • Pour batter over the top, using a spatula, level it out over the fruit
  • Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake for 35 minutes
  • Allow cake to cool for 10 minutes before flipping it over and cutting into it

*Before removing the cake from the oven, I stick a toothpick in it, and if it comes out clean, the cake is done.

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