The pear is a tricky fruit. The window between rock-hard and mushy seems to last no more than a few hours. Unlike, say, bananas that can be peeled and frozen for smoothies, or apples that tend to last AND remain perfect for hundreds of recipes even if they are a little past their prime, too often around here, pears have just gotten tossed. I’m happy to report, however, that sorry state of affairs is officially a thing of the past. Last week as four pears started to head down that inevitable road, I peeled and cored them, sprinkled them with about a tablespoon of lemon juice and kept them covered in the fridge for a few days.
When I was ready to play with a pear cake recipe, the peeled pears were in perfect shape. Problem solved. Lemon successfully managed to buy time for the pears.
As for the Ginger Pear Cake that they ended up in: A delightful addition to Sunday Brunch. A few tweaks and it could transfer over into the dessert realm, but this version, with just a touch of sweetness and a good dose of healthy walnuts provided a solid start to the day.
- 3 cups whole wheat flour
- 1-1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
- 1 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger or 1 tsp. powdered ginger
- 3/4 cup pear puree
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup raw sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350. Prepare a 12-cup bundt pan with cooking spray.
- Puree pears and set aside.
- Sift together dry ingredients.
- Beat ginger, oil, sugar, eggs and pear puree. Add dry ingredients and beat until just combined. Stir in walnuts.
- Pour batter into prepared bundt pan. Bake for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.