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Our rustic, no-mixer Fresh Pear Cake with candied ginger is like an old friend you haven’t seen in a long time. It’s familiar and comforting and welcome anytime at your table!
After just one bite you’ll be surprised how distinct the flavors are in this pear cake. We love its soft, tender texture, the chunks of fresh, sweet pear and the occasional hint of candied ginger. Try this ‘great anytime’ fall favorite when you want a delicious dessert that’s easy to throw together. This lovely cake keeps for days at room temperature. Maybe that old friend will stop by for a slice and a cup of tea 🙂
Do you have to make this pear cake in a springform pan?
You don’t have to bake this fresh pear cake in a springform pan, but it makes for an easy, pretty presentation. If you bake it in a 9-inch square pan, cast iron skillet or other deep baking pan, just cut and serve right from the pan. Once cooled you can invert the cake onto a platter if desired.
You will need three pears for this recipe; two diced and folded into the batter and another sliced on top.
Another option is to skip the decorative slices on top and fold all three pears into the cake batter instead. If you skip the sliced pear on top, try sprinkling the entire cake with coarse sugar and sliced almonds. What a treat!
There’s so much to love about this cake!
From the easy, no mixer required recipe, to the tender crumb loaded with soft chunks of pear and ginger, this cake is a keeper. Not overly sweet, our tender pear cake is great served at breakfast, brunch or dessert. It travels well, making it great for pot lucks or as a gift for a sick friend. It’s perfectly delicious served with just a dusting of powdered sugar or a dollop of whipped cream.
Change it up! Make this pear cake your own with just a few minor adjustments.
Turn this recipe into an Italian Pear Cake by omitting the candied ginger and using mascarpone in place of the sour cream. Or, omit the candied ginger and add 1 teaspoon cardamom with the dry ingredients. Sprinkle the entire top with walnuts or almonds for a nice crunchy bite.
This cake is also pretty fantastic served with a dollop of ginger whipped cream. Beat 1 cup of whipping cream until soft peaks form, then add 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar. Beat the cream until stiff peaks form then dollop on individual slices of cake and enjoy!
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Fresh Pear Cake
- Springform pan
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (divided)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 8 ounces sour cream
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 3 large, peeled, firm ripe pears, divided (Bosc or Barlett)
- 3 tablespoons chopped crystalized ginger, divided
- 1 tablespoon coarse sugar for topping
- Powdered sugar for dusting, if desired
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Turn the base of a 9-inch springform pan upside down so you can easily slide the cake off. Line the bottom with a round piece of parchment paper, then lightly spray the pan with vegetable cooking spray.
- Peel, core and chop 2 pears. Toss with ¼ cup of flour and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 cups of flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda and granulated sugar. Make a well in the center and set aside.
- In a small mixing bowl lightly whisk the eggs. Add the sour cream, melted cooled butter, vanilla and almond extracts. Fold together with a rubber spatula until blended. Set aside.
- Pour the sour cream mixture into the flour mixture and fold together with a spatula until most of the flour is incorporated. The batter will be thick and seem a little dry. Immediately add the pears, and any pear juice, and half the chopped ginger. Fold together until incorporated. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Sprinkle the remaining chopped ginger over the top of the cake.
- Set aside to rest for 10 minutes before baking. While the cake is resting, slice the remaining peeled and cored pear into 8 to 12 slices. Top the unbaked cake with the pear slices and lightly press into the batter. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of coarse or granulated sugar.
- Bake at 350°F until a toothpick comes out with no wet batter, about 65-75 minutes. Tent with foil during baking if needed to prevent over-browning.
- Allow the cake to cool on a rack for 30 minutes before removing the sides of the pan. Slide onto a serving plate, cut into wedges and enjoy slightly warm or cooled. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
- Store leftovers in a sealed container at room temperature for a day or two, or refrigerate for longer storage.
- To make an Italian Pear Cake omit the candied ginger and substitute mascarpone for the sour cream 🙂
- You can also omit the candied ginger add 1 teaspoon cardamom with the dry ingredients instead. Sprinkle the top with chopped walnuts or sliced almonds if desired.
- This cake is also great served with ginger whipped cream. Beat 1 cup of whipping cream until soft peaks form. Add 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form. Dollop on individual slices of cake and enjoy!
Here are a few more recipes you might also enjoy:
Juicy fresh pears and ground walnuts are the stars of these moist and delicious, cardamom scented Pear Walnut Muffins. Click HERE to get the recipe.
Wine Poached Chicken, Pear and Walnut Salad simply dressed with red wine vinegar and olive oil. Click HERE to get the recipe.
Thanks so much for stopping by! Tricia