Sunday, 3 August 2008

Pear and ginger cake

OK, I admit it’s not exactly seasonal but I had a hankering for ginger and this recipe has been in my thoughts for a while.

I don’t enjoy peeling fruit and vegetables; it started out because I am left handed and all the peelers seemed to be made for righties. But now I have a Y-shaped peeler I don’t have this excuse – peeling is just not fun. The big exception is pears. I could stand peeling pears till the cows come home – which is a long time as I don’t own any cows, nor do any live with me. There’s something about the texture of the pear skin and the pear itself that is lovely. I’m sure a psychologist could make something of that....

Pear and ginger is not a combination I had ever seen before and it works really well – the fragrant juicy pear sits nicely alongside the warm ginger. I think a lot of fruits would work well in this recipe and I’m tempted to try plums.

I served this cake with Chantilly cream alongside a cup of tea but it would be equally delicious warmed and served with ice cream for dessert.

For the cake:
175g unsalted butter, at room temperature
175g caster sugar
175g self raising flour
4 teaspoons ground ginger
3 eggs

For the topping:
2-3 pears, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
25g unsalted butter
1 tablespoon soft brown sugar

How to make:

- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.
- Line a 20cm round springform cake tin.
- Start by making the cake: cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add the flour, ginger and eggs and beat until well combined and you have a smooth, thick batter.
- Spoon the mixture into the cake tin and put to one side.
- Peel, core and slice the pears. Don’t do this too far in advance as they will brown. If you want to prepare the pears in advance brush with a little lemon juice to stop browning.
- Arrange the pear slices on top of the cake batter and then sprinkle with brown sugar and dot with butter.
- Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a skewer comes out cleanly. Mine took a little longer at 55 minutes.
- Serve either warm with ice cream or at room temperature with cream.
- Bask in glory at the wonderful thing you have made.
- Eat.


glamah16 said...

Pear and Ginger sounds heavenly. I have a big chunk of Ginger I just purchased and Im trying to throw it in everything. I am also secretly wishing it was Fall already.More fun to cook in fall.

Cakelaw said...

Pear and ginger is a fantastic combination in my books - yum!

Rosie said...

Pear and ginger is such a great combo - sounds good to me anytime to bake this cake - mmmmmmm....

Rosie x

Mike of Mike's Table said...

Aside from how delicious this sounds, it also looks so wonderfully put together. I never have much luck making my cakes look too good...unless there's frosting, in which case I merely get to hide the parts that don't look good and raise it up to so-so looking, lol. Another combo that I really like with pears that I think you'd enjoy, too: cardamom

Dee said...

I love pear & ginger (I use molasses in my p&g upside down cake). A chantilly cream alongside sounds like a little bit of heaven.

Carolyn said...

Made this on Sunday and took to a picnic with French friends yesterday (one of my many missions in life is to convert the French to English style cakes :0 ). It was a big hit. Seconds were eaten. We thought it was delicious too. The pears were more subtle than I thought they'd be. Overall, very lovely.

I added an extra teaspoon of ginger, for added gingeryness, and served the cake on its own.