Maggie Beer

Pear and Ginger Upside Down Cake

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Step 1: Preheat oven to 180C.

Step 2: Line the base and sides of a 20 centimeter solid based cake tin, with greaseproof paper. Ensure the collar of the grease proof paper is 3-4 centimeter higher than the sides of the tin.

Step 3: Cut the pears in half, remove the core and then cut into slices half a centimeter thick and arrange over the base of the prepared cake tin in a circular decorative pattern.

Step 4: For Verjuice syrup, place one and a half cups of the Verjuice, butter, sugar, lemon zest and ginger into a large shallow saucepan approximately 28 centimetee in diameter. Bring to a boil over a high heat. Boil for 4 to 5 minutes or until the syrup begins to turn a caramel colour, until deep golden brown, but not burnt.

Step 5: Remove the Verjuice syrup from heat and stir in the remaining amount of Verjuice. Immediately pour the syrup into the cake pan over the arranged pears to prevent further cooking.

Step 6: For the cake batter, in a mixing bowl beat half the sugar with egg yolks until thick and pale. With the mixer running slowly pour the Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Verjuice into the egg yolk mixture.

Step 7: Mix for 30 seconds to combine.

Step 8: Sift the flour and baking powder into the batter and beat for one minute or until mixture is smooth. Pour into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

Step 9: Place egg whites into a clean mixing bowl and whisk until soft peaks form. Continue to whisk, gradually adding remaining sugar and continue to whisk until sugar has dissolved.

Step 10: Gently fold in the meringue one thirds at a time into the batter mixture using a metal spoon.

Step 11: Pour mixture into a prepared tin and bake for fourty to fourty-five minutes, or until cooked all the way through.

Step 12: Remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin for 15 minutes. Before turning out pull out or cut off baking paper collar so it is level with the cake.

Step 13: To turn out onto plate, which has a lip to catch the Verjuice syrup, place the plate on top of the cake, then flip over and slide off the cake tin and remove baking paper.

Step 14: Serve warm or at room temperature and drizzle over any excess syrup.


Pears in Verjuice Syrup

  1. 2 pears ripe but still firm
  2. 438ml 1 3/4 cup Verjuice
  3. 1 1/4 cup caster sugar
  4. zest of 1 lemon
  5. 40ml 2 tbspn crystallised ginger roughly chopped

Cake Batter

  1. 250ml 1 cup caster sugar
  2. 4 free range eggs separated
  3. 83ml 1/3 cup Verjuice
  4. 250ml 1 cup plain flour
  5. 3/4 tspn baking powder

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