Its the end pear season (and autumn, which actually means that Christmas is JUST around the country, AHHHHHhhhhhhhh) and my pear tree is starting to look sad. I gave away loads of pears and then decided that I should use what I have, whilst greedily thinking that maybe I shouldn’t have given away so many pears. I got out my ladder and waited for the rain to temporarily stop, and then I was up the tree, precariously trying to grab pears that I couldn’t quite reach. After I filled a bowl up and it started to rain again (wettest September in years) I had to decide what to make, so I came up with three ideas, I know, two more than usual and all three were actually good! I made some preserves, which Ill blog about at a later date and then I settled on cake, because you know, life is better with cake (and cinnamon)!
Pear Almond Cake
Makes: 1 large cake – serves 8-12 Prep time: 20 mins Cook time: 45mins Total time: 65 mins
- 3 large (or 5 small pears) cored and quartered
- 11/4 cup (250g) unsalted butter
- ½ cup + 1 tbsp (125g+ 1 tbsp) caster sugar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup (125g) self-raising flour
- 1 cup (100g) ground almonds
Now how to make this yummy cake:
1. Melt 1/4 cup (50g) of butter in a frying pan, adding 2 tbsp of sugar on medium to low heat. Continually shake the pan to create a golden brown caramel. Do not stir it, ie no spoons or spatulas, that will ruin your caramel, just occasionally swirl the pan (Not going to lie, my caramel mixture went SUPER weird and basically split but I was in a meh mood, so just went with it and threw in the pears and the pears seemed to sort the sauce and it worked in the end with a few bits of hard sugar that I took out). Add the pears and cinnamon and simmer for 5-10 minutes until browned. Set aside. The idea is not to cook them to mush at all, you kind of want them to be a bit al dente, slight bite but not hard.
2. Preheat the oven the 190C/370FC. Grease and flour a 22cm springform pan, or cheat and use a liner like I did!
3. In a large bowl, cream together the remaining butter and sugar. Mix in the eggs (I throw them both in at the same time and whisk like mad), before folding in the flour and ground almonds with a spatular or wooden spoon.
4. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, smoothing over the surface. Arrange the pears in the top and spoon over a small amount of the surplus caramely juice (or just haphazardly pour them all around like I did with all the sauce). Bake for 40-45 minutes
5.Once cooked, set the cake aside to cool (ideally on a wire rack). Once completely cooled, remove from liner or pan. Refrigerate any uneaten cake in a air tight container and consume within 4 days. Its yummy on its own but you can also serve with whipped cream or custard.
Remember to share with friends and enjoy!
Notes: you can also make this gluten free by subbing out the self raising flour for GF flour, adding in 2 teaspoons of xantham gum and a tablespoon of baking powder.