Cardamom Pear Cake

Cardamom Pear Cake

Cardamom Pear Cake

Well, lets just say that last weekend, I planned to
make a beautiful Blackberry Galette and share it’s gorgeous beauty with you here, lets say on this blog, today.

Let’s also say that the berries were beautiful, the sun was shining and the pastry crust was coming together swimmingly.  The perfect synthesis of crispy crust and jammy sweet berries was soon going to be a reality.  A beautiful reality.
Berries, honey and lemon juice were lovingly nestled into pale golden pastry, sprinkled lightly with a smattering of sugar. Popped into the oven and anxiously anticipated, and then a peek whilst baking produced this.

A slightly blackened, bubbly, jammy mess.  As you can see from this very bad photo that however ugly, it did not deter me in the least from taking a slice.

It was delicious.  But definitely not blog-worthy. So after I dried my eyes over burnt galette, I moved on to something that definitely is blog-worthy. Yvette van Boven’s Cardamom Pear Cake with White Chocolate.

Luscious wine and spice poached pears baked in a rich, buttery cardamom-infused cake.

I fell in love with Yvette’s second book in her Home Made series, Home Made Winter, the moment I spied it on the shelf at the book store. The cover, graced with this delectable cake lured me in. And I bought it on the spot.

A dense, buttery cake generously studded with freshly ground cardamom and topped with the lightest smear of melted white chocolate is the result. Heavenly. I have a very small

My friend and fellow blogger Karista Bennet of Karista’s Kitchen and I both share an obsession with the spice.  Her Spiced Banana Bread is my all time favorite, and cardamom features prominently.

A couple notes on the recipe.  This is a decadent, rich cake.  Don’t let the simplicity of it fool you.   Originally written for European kitchens, it’s important to know a few things.  You’ll need a slightly larger loaf pan ( 9×5″) than the standard American 8 1/2 x 4 1/2″ pan.  I would also look for the smallest, most firm pears you can find.  You want to make sure that the top of the pears are submerged in the dough, so they can’t be too tall.  Also the bake time for my oven was much longer than the 40 minutes the recipe called for. 50-55 minutes did the trick.

Cardamom Pear Cake

For the pears:

2 or 3 very small, very firm Bosc pears, peeled with stems in tact.

1 bottle (750 ml) dry white wine (I used Chardonnay)

1 1/4 C. white sugar

4 whole cloves

3 star anise

2 whole cinnamon sticks

10 cardamom pods

1 1/2 C. water

For the Cake:

1 1/2 C. (3 sticks) unsalted butter

1 C. white sugar

4 eggs

1 1/2 C. self-rising flour

1 1/2 T. freshly ground cardamom

1/4 tsp. salt

3 oz. white chocolate chips

In a large sauce pan combine the pears, wine, sugar, and spices. Simmer over medium heat for 30 min, no longer.  You want to avoid the pears becoming too soft or they will fall apart in the oven. Remove with a large spoon to cool. Add the water and bring the mixture to a boil to reduce the poaching liquid by half. Set aside to cool, and strain the mixture to remove the spices.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Cream the butter and sugar in a medium bowl.  Add the eggs one at a time, incorporating each thoroughly before adding the next.  Sift the flour into the mixture along with the cardamom and salt.

Grease the loaf pan with butter, line with parchment paper and grease that as well.  Dollop a small amount of the batter into the bottom of the pan and spread in an even layer.  Place the cooled pears down the middle of the pan, spacing evenly. Dollop the remainder of the dough around the pears and smooth. Rap the pan once or twice on the counter to settle the batter around the pears and avoid air bubbles.

Place on baking sheet and bake 45-55 minutes.  The cake will appear to be dry.  Don’t worry about this, as you will douse it in delicious poaching liquid upon serving. Allow to cool at room temperature for 1 hour.  Lifting the edges of the parchment paper, carefully remove from the pan and let sit on counter to cool further.

Once completely cool, melt white chocolate in a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.  Drizzle the chocolate over the cake and let harden.

Serve slices of cake with the poaching liquid along side.

More Recipes

Share on social


Don't miss a single post!

Be the first to know about new flavors, upcoming events, recipes and more!

Eva Rosenberg

Eva Rosenberg

Welcome to Eva's Kitchen where I share my adventures in cooking. My creations may not always turn out Pinterest perfect, but I usually end up with a funny picture or an interesting meal. Thanks for stopping by!


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join the mailing list

if you want to connect on a more personal level & get content straight to your inbox – sign up below to be added to the list!

(don’t worry, I’ll never spam you or give out your email address)