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Cook4 hrs 30 mins
From "Gordon Ramsay: A Chef for All Seasons", this lovely cake combines the sweetness of pears and honey with the tartness of lime. I wasn't able to get pear liqueur so I substituted a mixture of vanilla liqueur and kirsch which is also lovely. Please note that the standing times are included in the cooking time.
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 forelle pears, peeled, quartered and cored
- 1⁄4 cup lime juice
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1⁄2 vanilla bean, split
- 6 tablespoons pear liqueur
- 3⁄4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3⁄4 cup superfine sugar
- 2 limes, zest of
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1⁄8 teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1⁄4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- For the pears, melt the butter in a medium skillet on medium heat.
- Add the pears and cook, turning occasionally, 5 minutes, until light golden.
- Stir in the lime juice, honey and vanilla bean and cook for 2 more minutes.
- Stir in the liqueur and remove from the heat.
- Let the pears steep about 3 hours.
- Discard the vanilla bean.
- For the cake, in a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar and lime zest with a hand mixer at medium speed until smooth.
- Blend in the baking powder and salt.
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
- Turn the speed to low and beat in the flour until just blended.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rest 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, grease a 9" springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
- Drain the pears, reserving the syrup.
- Pat the pears lightly dry.
- Thinly slice half of the pears and reserve.
- Chop the remaining pears and stir into the batter.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and level the top.
- Arrange the pear slices on top.
- Bake in a preheated 400 degree F oven for 10 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to 300 degrees F and bake until the top of the cake feels springy and the tester comes out clean, about 1 hour.
- Cool the cake in the pan on a rack.
- Remove the cake to a wire rack.
- Skewer the top and spoon the reserved syrup over the top.