pear and almond cake
No waffly intro on this one, am going to get straight to the point – this cake is sensational! Sweet plump pears, moist almond cake and a sugar and flaked nut topping. I bake it in a brownie tin to get a thinner cake which gives a perfect fruit/cake/nut ratio. Have it alone with a big pot of tea in the afternoon, or dressed up with a dollop of crème fraîche at the end of a meal. Simple to make and absolutely divine…my kind of cake!
Pear and Almond Cake
2-3 ripe pears (conference or green william)
75g (1/2 cup) self-raising flour
75g (1/2 cup) ground almonds
150g ( 1 1/2 stick) unsalted butter
35g (1/2 cup) flaked almonds
125g (1/2 cup + 2 tbsp) caster sugar
few drops of almond extract (optional)
juice of 1 lemon
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
Peel, core and slice the pears. Squeeze over half the lemon and set aside.
Allow the butter to come to room temperature. Place all but 1 tbsp of the sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter (cubed to make mixing easier), and cream with an electric whisk until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until just combined (it may curdle a little at this point, but don’t worry the flour will sort it out).
Sift the flour and combine with the ground almonds and salt. Slowly incorporate the dry mixture into the batter, beating lightly (be careful not to overwork). Add the almond extract (if using) and remaining lemon juice. Mix to combine.
Grease and line a brownie tin with parchment paper. Pour in the cake batter then arrange the pear slices over the batter. Sprinkle with the flaked almonds and the remaining tbsp of sugar.
Bake for 30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10-15 minutes.
Serve the cake while still warm, or turn it out onto a wire rack to cool completely if you prefer to have it cold (equally good!).
~ by gourmettraveller on December 11, 2009.