Pear & Almond Cake

"I used a Comice pear - my favourite variety - for this recipe as the texture and taste are both excellent. Whichever variety you use, it is essential that the pear is absolutely ripe."

Preparation: 35 minutes + 1ΒΌ hours baking plus cooling


  • 175g  softened unsalted Butter
  • 175g Caster Sugar
  • ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 3 Eggs, beaten
  • 175g SR Flour
  • ½ tsp Baking Powder
  • 50g Ground Almonds
  • 1 large ripe Pear (approximately 300g)
  • 2 tbsp Milk
For the glaze
  • Apricot Conserve, sieved


  1. Grease and line a 20cm round springform cake tin. Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4/180°C.
  2. Cream together the butter, sugar and vanilla extract for a couple of minutes until light and fluffy, then gradually beat in the eggs.
  3. Combine the flour, baking powder and almonds and fold into the mixture.
  4. Peel and core the pear. Thinly slice one quarter and finely chop the remainder.
  5. Fold the chopped pear into the cake batter with enough milk to give a soft dropping consistency.
  6. Transfer the mixture into the prepared tin. Do not worry about levelling the surface; instead, arrange the pear slices over the top, pressing down gently so that they are still visible, but lie in the batter.
  7. Bake for 1–1¼ hours until risen, golden and set or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.
  8. Brush the surface of the cake with apricot conserve and leave to cool in the tin.

This recipe is from Cakes by Liz Herbert and published by Simon & Schuster 2009.