I wanted to start this blog off on the right foot, so of course it was going to have to be a dessert. It’s just the best meal of the day. Since I’ve named this site Upside Down Pear, it is only appropriate to make an upside down pear cake as my very first recipe. Using that as my logic, I of course set out to find an upside down pear cake as I have never made an upside down anything before. I found this one on Cooking for Keeps that called for browned butter and I almost didn’t even read the recipe as I was like...that sounds hard...what’s browned butter??
Luckily, I modified it to make it easier for my brain to digest and it still turned out awesome! I can honestly say I am very proud at the finished product. I brought it over to my parents and they were impressed, which always helps one’s ego.
I decided to switch the all-purpose flour for wheat flour. One because it was all I had in the house at the time, and two, because it made me think of this as a healthier dessert and less guilty about eating it. Using whole wheat flour gave the cake some density, so one slice and you’ll be good for the night. I must say, that I would make the caramelized pears alone and add them as toppings to just about anything. Or eat them plain! I had some left-over and did just that.
This is not a very sweet cake, and I must admit that I have begun to prefer my desserts to be less sugary and sweet. I have been purposely cutting back on how much sugar I eat as I do believe that sugar is addicting and overall not very good for one’s health. Even though I say that, I am never going to give it up, but I will try to limit how much I consume. It’s all about moderation, which is how I would like to live my life and I think you’ll find that reflected in the recipes to come.
Upside Down Pear Cake
Prep Time: 45 mins
Bake Time: 25-30 mins
Total Time: 1 hr 15 mins
Makes: 8 servings
For the caramelized pears: 3 tablespoons of butter 1 tablespoon of water 1/2 cup of brown sugar 1 pear (I’ve used both Bartlette and Bosc)
For the cake: 1 and 1/2 cup whole wheat flour 1/2 teaspoon of salt 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda 1 teaspoon of baking powder 1 stick of butter, room temperature 1/2 cup of granulated sugar 2 eggs, room temperature 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla 11 tablespoons of buttermilk
1) Preheat oven to 350° F and grease a 9” cake pan.
2) Melt the 3 tablespoons of butter in a sauce pan over medium heat.
3) Add the water and brown sugar and cook until the sugar is dissolved.
4) Cook the pears in the melted butter and sugar for a couple of minutes. Set aside, away from heat.
5) Wisk the dry ingredients together in a medium sized bowl. I used a dessert fork.
6) In a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar.
7) Once combined, add the eggs one at a time and the vanilla.
8) Slowly stir in the flour and buttermilk in 3 batches beginning with the buttermilk. I began with 3 tablespoons of buttermilk then added roughly 3/4 cups of the dry mixture. Then I added 4 tablespoons of buttermilk and another 3/4 cups of the dry mixture. Finally I added the last 4 tablespoons of buttermilk and the remaining dry mixture.
9) Arrange the pears in the bottom of the cake pan and pour the remaining sauce over the pears.
10) Carefully scoop the batter over the pears and spread evenly. Be cautious about not moving the pears.
11) Bake for 25-30 minutes. You can check it with a toothpick to see if it’s done. The toothpick should come out clean.
12) Wait for the cake to cool a bit before removing from the pan. Then enjoy!