Pear Pumpkin Spice Cake

Pumpkin Pear Cake

Pumpkin, pears, ginger and spices bring out the wonderful fall flavors of this cake. To make it even more special, use pears grown in the Northwest.

Serves: 8-10
Difficulty: moderate
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 45 min
Special tools: mixer

Ingredients

1/2 c brown sugar, packed
1/4 c butter, melted
1 t cornstarch
2 pears, slightly firm
1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
2 t dried ground ginger
1 t cinnamon
1/2 t ground nutmeg
1/2 t ground allspice
1 t baking soda
3/4 t baking powder
4 egg whites
1 c Lyle’s Golden Syrup*
1 c canned pumpkin
1/2 c cooking oil

Steps

Preheat oven to 325° F. Combine brown sugar, melted butter and cornstarch in a small bowl and stir. Pour mixture into a round 10” x 2” baking pan or a square 9” x 9” x 2” pan. Peel pears, cut in half lengthwise and remove seeds and core fibers. Cut each half into 3-4 wedges. Arrange pears in a circle or rows over the brown sugar mixture. Combine flour, spices, baking soda and baking powder in a small bowl; set aside. In a mixer bowl, whip egg whites on med speed until soft peaks form.

Meanwhile, place syrup in a microwaveable container and warm in the microwave on high for 1 min. Gradually add warm syrup to egg whites, whipping until stiff peaks form. On low speed, beat in pumpkin and oil. Fold flour mixture into pumpkin mixture until just moistened.

Carefully spoon over pears. Spread mixture evenly with back of spoon. Tap the pan on the counter 10 times to pop air bubbles. Bake 40-45 min or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 min. Loosen from sides of pan, invert onto serving plate, and serve warm.

* Lyle’s Golden Syrup is a sugar cane product from England that has a distinct, delicious flavor perfect for baking. It’s also great on ice cream, oatmeal, pancakes and more. If you like, substitute two parts light corn syrup plus one part molasses or equal parts honey and corn syrup.