Cooler weather means cake eating season for me! It’s too warm in summer to use the oven. But as the weather turns chilly, using my oven to bake treats turns my kitchen into a toasty relaxing space. That delicious smell of baking also adds to that feeling of being content.
One weekend I had a bag of pears that were juicy. Not quite at that over ripe stage but getting there. I thought I could stew them and have them with yogurt and nuts as a tasty snack. My friend was visiting me with her little tribe of kids so I decided the best way to use these pears was to make a teacake.
Teacake is a happy word to me – memories of sharing warm teacake with friends, chatting and laughing. What better cake to make to share with my friend and the kids. The funny thing was that when she came over and I said I made a Pear Tea cake she laughed because she had just seen a recipe for one and thought it looked delicious.
I found this recipe for Pear Tea Cake by Not Quite Nigella. When I get the urge to bake and search for a recipe, I don’t always have all the right ingredients. Because I wanted to make this Pear Tea Cake there and then, I swapped the wholemeal flour for self raising flour and used coconut sugar instead of cinnamon or vanilla sugar. This cake is super easy to make.
I have made this cake a lot since finding the recipe. If you use soft juicy pears, they make the bottom layer of the cake moist because the juices seep into the batter. The pears break down a bit and the cake melts in the mouth. If you use harder, crunchy pears – the pears hold their shape and the outside of the bottom layer does crisp up a bit.
Either way this cake is delicious.
Pear Tea Cake
1 1/2 cups of self raising flour
3/4 cup of raw caster sugar
125 g of melted butter
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
3 medium pears, chopped. (I leave the skin on.)
Coconut sugar (or brown sugar) to sprinkle on the top of cake.
Preheat oven to 160 degrees. My oven is fan forced so I use this temperature. The original recipe says 180 degrees.
Mix flour, sugar, egg, butter and vanilla in a bowl. This will all come together and feel quite buttery.
Pat down about three quarters of this mixture into a lined small round cake tin. This is your bottom layer.
Top with diced pears. Dot pieces of the remaining cake mixture on top of the pears.
Sprinkle with coconut or brown sugar.
Bake for 40 to 45 minutes.
Allow this cake to cool slightly and serve with cream or ice cream….or both!
Another cooler weather treat for me is baked fruit. I love putting some pears in a baking dish with a drizzle of maple syrup. Then baking this at a low temperature for 30 minutes. I let the magic of slowly baking pears happen while I go for my morning walk. That way when I arrive back home, the kitchen is toasty warm and the pear’s sweet juices has been combined with the maple syrup. This yumminess goes on top of my breakfast oats, with Greek yogurt, chopped macadamia nuts and chia seeds.
If you use soft pears, these will break down slightly and be more like stewed fruit. Hard pears will be crunchy and add contrast to the creaminess of the oats.
A delicious afternoon snack for me is a sliced pear alongside some brie cheese. When I eat pear like this, it needs to be crunchy – a bite of pear plus a bite of brie cheese, yum. The freshness of the pear goes well with the richness of the brie cheese.
Now over to you, what are your favourite ways to eat pears? We would love to hear them. Please share in the comments below.
Keen for more pear recipes? Then check out Taste’s extensive pear recipe collection.