I have to say I did not have getting so sick in my holiday plans. I baked tons but not as much as I had planned. I decided that I would not allow this cold to keep my from my fun so….I plan to bake all the goodies I had planned even though the holiday has passed. The best part of that idea is that I can bake at my own pace since I am not worried about a specific date any more. So that’s nice.
I am telling you this because you may find a few of my posts really odd. Homemade German Stollen filled with almond paste….panettone…..in January? Yes. I got sick and still want my goodies! I have friends and family that did not get their goodies due to this cold. Better late than never I guess.
This cake recipe I am sharing with you today is terrific. I made 6 of them. They were given as gifts at school along with some other treats. I was baking at a busy clip so I was not able to take the step by step photos I usually do. I apologize for that. This cake is a show stopper! It’s lovely and has a wonderful caramel like flavor from the brown sugar along with the fresh sweet pears. The buttery pear liqueur glaze just takes this cake to a whole other level. It makes a great gift! Aren’t we always looking for a perfect hostess gift? Yes, I am an odd ball and still believe in hostess gifts.
Oh, before we get to the recipe I wanted to share a quick tiny farm tale…. Penelope the pig no longer sleeps in her crate. She is potty trained and very polite. So she has a very cushy bed with her own blankets on the floor in the kitchen. She has access to the kitchen and the dining room all day which makes her happy. There is a baby gate separating the kitchen and dining room from the rest of the house. It’s still up because I have a 3-year-old and I prefer not to have her running through the kitchen while I’m cooking (for both her safety and my sanity).
The gate is the kind you have to lift slightly to open. The dogs have lived with that gate for 3 years without ever figuring out how to open it. Last night as Hubby was locking up the house he put Penelope into her bed and covered her with her blanket. He closed the gate and came to bed. Well about 2 minutes later Penelope comes oinking into the room. He says he thought he closed the gate. He picked her up and tucker her back into bed. He came back into our room with Penelope right behind him! Now we are both staring at that pig trying to figure this out. So he takes her back to her bed again…this time he waits.
Once Penelope thought he was gone she went right over the that gate and stuck her snout under it. She popped her head up and poof…the gate was open and she was on her merry way back to me. That little pig is only 10 weeks old!!!! She figured out a gate that is meant to stump young children and dogs!!!! She is a baby pig! Hubby had to rig the gate to stay closed. Penelope tried for a while then gave up and went to bed.
Pigs are VERY smart….and cute….look
Penelope feeling festive while the rest of us are sick…
This is what cuddling with a pig looks like……
Daisy the goat and Penelope the pig have met and are becoming fast friends….Oh!!!! One more farm update!!!! The moran chicks that have been living in my laundry room for a couple of months are now out in the barnyard with the big girls. They are finding their way out there. I am keeping a close eye to make sure they don’t get beat up by those older
hags I mean girls. I know this tiny farm sounds crazy but I have never had more fun! Truly.
Brown Sugar Pear Pound Cake Soaked in Pear and Butter Liquor ~ Tamatha Mavraides
Chopped walnuts enough to cover the bottom of your bundt pan about 3/4 cup
3 sticks of butter (softened)
5 eggs (at room temp)
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
3 cups packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup pear brandy or liqueur
2 1/2 pears peeled and chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
2 tablespoons fresh orange zest (fine)
For the Soak
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup pear liqueur
half a stick of butter
Here we go….
Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Prepare your bundt pan by greasing it and lining it with parchment. For this cake I use a pan with a flat bottom so the nuts show through. Scatter the chopped nuts over the entire bottom of the pan. Be neat as the bottom will be the top. Set the pan aside.
In a bowl stir together the flour, salt and baking powder. Set the bowl aside.
In the work bowl of your standing mixer cream together the butter and the sugar.
Add the eggs to the creamed mixture one at a time mixing well after each egg.
Into the milk add the vanilla extract and the 1/4 cup of pear liqueur.
Next, alternate between adding the flour mixture with adding the milk mixture. Do not over beat the batter, but be sure all of the ingredients are combined.
Fold in the pears gently. Be sure to mix the pears all the way trough the batter.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. I used two smaller bundts instead of one large as I was baking gifts. They are 8 inch pans. I found them years ago and love them. They are 4 inches deep and make a lovely gift size cake.
Smooth the batter into your pan (or pans) and bake until the skewer comes out clean about 75 minutes.
Cool on a rack for about 10 minutes then turn the cakes out onto your plate (or cake board if you are baking gifts). Poke the cake gently with your skewer around the top. Poke the cakes deeply as the soak will follow your holes through the cake.
For the soak
In a saucepan melt the butter and sugar once that is done and the sugar is dissolved take the pan off the heat. Add the pear liqueur. Give it all a good stir then ladle the soaking liquid over the cake evenly. Let the cake drink up the soak before adding more. Allow the cake to cool completely to room temperature before packing it up. The aroma is wonderful!!!
Make this cake. It’s so good!!!! It’s very pretty see….
All boxed up….
In the way of packaging, I buy cake boxes from Michael’s craft store or I drive almost an hour to the cake supply store. Unfortunately, Michael’s doesn’t always have the right size boxes. I do like the ones with the clear top. These boxes are 8 inch boxes with the cakes siting on 8 inch boards that I top with pretty doilies.
I always use wire ribbon. It makes all the difference. I never close my boxes with bakers twine. The ribbon is the way to go. There is just something about that big puffy bow!