This recipe comes from Martha Stewart. It is simpler than the Bon Appétit one but it’s not your one bowl wonder. I recently posted the Bon Appétit recipe. Search for it if you haven’t seen it yet. I hope you try both and tell me which one you like best. I think this one is lighter than the BA one but it doesn’t have the depth of flavor. I think this Martha Stewart one is more of a Summer dessert and the BA recipe more for Fall. You be the judge.
Speaking of judging, I have been thinking a lot about judgment lately. I usually leave these philosophical topics for my personal journal but I have shared so many things with you that… what the heck. In fact, there are times that I am surprised by people who know facts and details of my life that I don’t often share. When they see my astonishment, they tell me that they read it in my blog. I forget how much I share with you. I thank you for reading. I have felt judged a lot by friends lately. I feel judged when I am given unsolicited advice. Advice that doesn’t take into account my ideas, thoughts or feelings hurts. It seems to me that if one person does not solicit advice from another person, then whatever the advice given will sound judgmental. Sometimes a person just needs to share or maybe be given a sympathetic, “Really!” I’m just saying… That is how I feel about that.
On to more thoughts on judging, I am so happy to say that I have been invited to the 2017 Los Angeles Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition in March of 2017. Have you noticed that EVOO is starting to go on sale? Do you remember why? That’s right! Olive Oil is in full production here in the Northern Hemisphere. Stores are trying to get rid of last years oils to make room for new oils. I think that in November we will begin to see 2016 Olio Nuovo and other EVOO’s. So, if you must buy, buy small and use it up so that you can make room for the freshly milled bottles.
This Pear Upside-Down Cake does not use any olive oil but it does use a few bowls. It has the usual creaming of butter and sugar and the second bowl with the dry ingredients that are incorporated into each other. The kicker is the third bowl which has the egg whites that are beaten until stiff and then folded in to the batter. The eggs whites seem like an extra step to a cake batter but it does make the cake very light and lovely. It’s worth the clean up.
You need an iron skillet to bake this cake.
1/2 cup packed Light Brown Sugar
3 Ripe Pears, (Barlett or Anjou), peeled and cored
1 1/2 cups Unbleached Flour
2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/4 tsp. Salt
8 Tbls. (1 stick) Unsalted Butter
1 cup Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
2 large Eggs, separated
1/2 cup Whole Milk
1/4 tsp. Cream of Tartar
Melt Butter in the bottom of a 10 1/2 inch cast iron skillet over low heat. Add Brown Sugar, stir until dissolved. Swirl to coat bottom of pan. Remove from heat and cool. Cut Pears into 1/4 inch wedges.
Arrange in a circular pattern over the Brown Sugar. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk Flour, Baking Powder and Salt.
In the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream Butter and Sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add Vanilla Extract and combine. Add Egg Yolks, one at a time, beating each one well.
Add on low speed the Flour mixture alternating with Milk to the Butter mixture until the Flour is incorporated.
In a large bowl, beat Egg Whites and Cream of Tartar with a hand mixer until stiff but not dry. With a rubber spatula, fold Egg Whites into the batter. Transfer to the skillet without disturbing the Pears. Smooth the batter with spatula.
Bake 45 minutes or until well brown and cake tester comes out clean.
Run a knife around the inside of pan and immediately inver the cake onto a serving dish. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Until next time, remember to eat well, drink well and live well.