Maple-Walnut Pear Cake

Is there an expiry date for maple syrup?

Maple syrup made and bought in Canada is the real deal. Maple syrup is not honey! It is a syrup made from tapping and extracting the sap and from sugar, red and black maple trees. In our last trip to Toronto, we carried home this amber liquid of goodness. Instead of just drinking it by the spoonfuls and generous drizzle on pancakes, maple syrup can used in baked goods.

What else do you think I can use the maple syrup for?

maple walnut pear cake

maple walnut pear cake

Tasting this maple syrup and looking through photos of our travel, I miss Canada. Many asked which do I prefer – Vancouver or Toronto. For now, I prefer Vancouver. Maybe because it reminds me so much of Melbourne that I adore and still in love with. And maybe because Toronto is such a big city that it seems a touch overwhelming. Or maybe have been the unimpressive weather that we experienced when we were there.

odd colour bicycle

odd colour bicycle

I made this maple walnut pear cake for the Malaysian feast that was held in our little humble abode. There is nothing Malaysian about it but what the hell right? At least we don’t get to finish this cake all by ourselves. Better to spread the maple love ;)

 

maple walnut pear cake

maple walnut pear cake

This recipe is adapted from my newly acquired baking book  by David Lebovitz, Ready for Dessert. I say adapted because I misread quantity of ingredients but strangely, it turned out pretty good. And also I added ginger powder. It is winter and we need that hint of warmth in a cake.

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Ingredients:

Topping

  • 80ml of maple syrup
  • 60g of dark brown sugar
  • 60g of walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 3 ripe Bosc pear or any firm pears, peeled, cored and quartered. Slice lengthwise

Cake

  • 210g of flour
  • 1tsp of baking powder
  • 2tsp of cinnamon powder
  • 2tsp of ground ginger powder
  • 1/2tsp of salt
  • 115g of unsalted room temperature butter
  • 100g of granulated sugar
  • 1/2tsp of vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 250ml of full cream milk

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 175C or 350F
  2. To make the topping, pour the maple syrup and add the dark sugar into a 23cm/9inch cake tin (In my case, wide bread loaf tin) or you can use a cast iron skillet. Set the pan under low heat until the mixture bubbles. Stir and dissolve all sugar into liquid. Remove from heat
  3. Sprinkle the toasted crushed walnuts into the cake pan and press it down gently. Arrange the pear slices neatly into the cake pan and set aside
  4. To make the cake, place all the dry ingredients into a bowl and whisk until all combine
  5. Cream the butter and sugar in a mixer until the mixture is yellow and fluffy
  6. Scrape down the sides and then add the vanilla extract and one egg at a time. Beat until all combine. Scrape down sides if needed
  7. Mix in half the flour, combine. And then other half and add milk. Combine thoroughly
  8. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and minding not to mess up the neatly layered of pears
  9. Place into oven for about 50 minutes or until the bamboo skewer comes out clean
  10. Allow cake to cool for 15mins. Use a knife to run around the sides of the pan. Invert onto serving plate gently
  11. Walnuts may be stuck to the pan. Just remove and add them back into the cake

TIP:

  • You can serve this with double whipped cream or walnut ice cream
  • The cake can be stored for 2 days at room temperature. Best served warm. Rewarm with foil on in low oven or a quick zap in a microwave oven
  • To keep warm for an hour, Leave the cake inverted with the tin still intact. Remove tin before serving
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