Pear Upside Down Cake


Reposted from Hold A Thought, Pen It Down which you can find here.

I was reading a novel called 'The Monday Night Cooking School' by Erica Bauermeister. Like the title mentions it is about a cooking class, its teacher and the various students. The novel was a love story-- a love for food, mostly Italian. However in one place she described baking a cake. Though not all, most of the process was described and curiosity got better of me and I tried baking the cake the way the author has described it. She did not mention any quantities etc, so these were my own, just her process or whatever was given.

I had some pears at home, they were over the first flush of youth, a little on the softer side. Both my husband and me, we enjoy crunchy pears, so I decided to bake something with these. A quick search on the internet showed something called pear upside down cake. That sounded good and not too much hassle, decided to bake my first pear cake.



Ingredients:

2 cups self raising flour
2 cups of brown sugar, please give one cup and half cup if adding white sugar cos it is sweeter
3/4th cup of vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 tea spoon of baking powder
3 tea spoon of cinnamon
1 table spoon of vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
A pinch of salt
4 pears (a little soft)
A slice of lime

Method:

Peel and slice the pears, add the lime juice and a tea spoon of cinnamon power and brown sugar and keep aside.

In a cake mixing bowl, mix the flour, 2 table spoons of cinnamon powder, the baking powder and the pinch of salt.

According to the author  'At its essence a cake is actually a delicate chemical equation, a balance between air and structure. You give your cake too much structure, it becomes tough, too much air, it falls apart.'

First put the butter/oil in your food processor/mixer, stir at slow speed. The butter/oil will start changing consistency, slowly add the sugar. Let them mix together till the oil and the sugar reach cloud like consistency of whipped cream. Then add one egg at a time and keep mixing slowly. Finally add the flour mixture a little at a time, alternating with the milk, maintaining the slow mixing pace.

In a baking dish, arrange the pear pieces and then pour the batter and bake for approximately an hour at 150 centigrades.  Once your cake has risen and is ready (tooth pick test), bring it out and let it cool down for half an hour or so, before turning the cake upside down.

Must say my first experiment with pear cake came out really well. All soft and fluffy. And it melted in the mouth just like a good cake should. My best cake so far. It went very well with chamomile & spiced apple tea.

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