Spiced Golden Candied Pear Cake recipe
- Credit: Archant
Making the most of the last of the winter pears, this lightly spiced cake combines the gentle heat of ginger with the sharp sweetness of cream cheese.
A sweep of edible gold dust on the translucent candied pears provides a touch of magic on a cold, January night. Best enjoyed with a pot of tea beside a warm fire.
225g golden caster sugar
185g self raising flour
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2 pears, chopped into small (1cm) cubes
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg
For the filling and topping
200g cream cheese
100g butter, softened
100g icing sugar
For the decoration
4 tbsp golden caster sugar
Edible gold shimmer
You will need
6” round baking tin, lined with greaseproof paper
Preheat the oven to 160C/325F/Gas Mark 3. Combine the eggs and golden caster sugar in a bowl and whisk vigorously until pale and fluffy.
Warm the milk gently in a pan until it just starts to simmer. Add the butter and mix well before pouring into the egg and sugar mixture. Quickly whisk until well combined.
Sieve in the flour, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Fold the dry ingredients in until no lumps remain. Gently stir in the chopped pears and tip the batter into the prepared cake tin, smoothing the top with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Bake in a preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Set aside to cool.
Slice the remaining pear as thinly as possible using a knife or mandolin. Place the slices on a sheet of greaseproof paper, sprinkle with golden caster sugar and bake in the oven (at the same temperature as the cake) for 15 minutes. Flip the slices over and sprinkle with a little more sugar before baking for a further 15 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool.
To prepare the frosting, beat the butter with an electric whisk (or a little elbow grease) until whipped and fluffy. Add the icing sugar and continue to mix until stiff and well combined. Add the cream cheese and mix with a wooden spoon. If the frosting is still a little too runny, add some more icing sugar a spoonful at a time until soft peaks are formed.
Place your cake on your plate or stand, curve side down, before piping some of the cream cheese frosting around the base to act as an edible support. Using a serrated knife, slice the cake in half through the middle and set the top layer aside. Fill the cake with half of the remaining cream cheese and pop the top layer back on. Don’t worry if the cream squishes out a little, this only adds to the charm.
Spoon the remaining cream on top of the cake, gently flicking with the back of a spoon to create soft peaks. Dust the candied pear slices with a little edible gold dust and slice the figs into eighths. Place the fruit on top of the cake, using the figs to prop up the pear slices.
Sprinkle with a little icing sugar to finish and enjoy within 7 days.