Barely any flour is used in this clever recipe, resulting in a mere whisper of a cake – fairy light, pale gold and studded with morsels of juicy pear
SILKEN PEAR CAKE
90g unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for greasing
130g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla essence
35g plain flour, sifted
30g cornflour, sifted
1 tsp baking powder, sifted
3 ripe pears, peeled, cored and cut into 2cm dice
FOR THE CHANTILLY CREAM (OPTIONAL)
300ml whipping cream
30g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract or paste or essence
1 Preheat oven to 170C/Fan 150C/Gas 3. Grease the ring of a 24cm springform tin, then turn the base upside down, so it no longer has a lip. Place a piece of baking paper over it, then clamp the ring around it to secure.
2 Combine the eggs, caster sugar and vanilla in a mixing bowl, and whisk with an electric mixer on high speed until the mixture has tripled in volume.
3 Using a hand whisk, gently fold in the plain flour, cornflour and baking powder with a pinch of salt until you have a smooth batter. Pour in the melted butter and fold with the whisk until totally combined, tilting the mixing bowl to make sure you’re reaching right to the bottom, where remnants of the butter might be sitting.
4 Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, then scatter the chunks of diced pear evenly over the surface. Don’t worry if there are a few pieces peeking through the top of the batter.
5 Bake for about 45 mins, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. The cake will balloon up when cooking, then collapse a bit after cooling, but this is entirely normal.
6 Cool completely in the tin before sliding a paring knife around the edge of the cake to release the ring. Carefully slide the cake onto a serving plate (leave it on the baking paper as the texture is very delicate). Serve with your choice of cream.
7 To make the chantilly cream, combine the cream, icing sugar and vanilla in a medium mixing bowl and whisk by hand or with an electric mixer until medium peaks form, being careful not to overwhisk.
Recipe from Poh Bakes 100 Greats by Poh Ling Yeow (Murdoch Books).
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