Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Pastry Queen Fresh Ginger-Pear Cake

Cough cough... 

It has been cold and rainy at Melbourne lately and I'm been down with fever, flu and cough... yuck! I didn't do much except sleeping... so please pardon me for not doing much for Little Thumbs Up (Yogurt) and blogging. Fortunately, I had baked this ginger cake a couple months ago for my aunties and the least, can blog about this cake today... 

This ginger cake surprises me totally!!!

Prior baking and tasting it, I like to call this an old lady cake because it is made with a generous amount of fresh ginger.

Me an old lady? I can't deny as I can feel that my age is catching up.

Actually, I was baking this ginger cake for my ginger loving aunties and this is why I can't help associating ginger cakes with old ladies... Ops! 
Sorry, auntie J and K! I hope that you can understand that I'm not a ginger person and don't like ginger as much as you do.

Remember that I said that my aunties really really really love ginger... They said that they like cakes that made with fresh ginger at here and also lots of ginger. Ok! You want ginger, I will give you ginger... LOL!

This unique ginger cake recipe originates from the book, The Pastry Queen by Rebecca Rather. As mentioned, the recipe is from a friend, Jonnie Stansbury who is one of the most knowledgeable chefs that Rebecca knows. Originally, this recipe makes a large 9 x 5 inches loaf but knowing that it has rich and dense texture, I have baked it into a larger but shorter cake with larger baking surfaces.

fresh ginger pear cake pastry queen
Fresh Ginger Pear Cake (The Pastry Queen)
This cake was baked with this large piece of ginger and these two Beurré Bosc pears.
Stir pear and ginger together 
Mixture will curdle slightly after the addition of eggs.
Meanwhile, stir in vanilla and all the zest into yogurt.
Fold in sifted dry ingredients alternately with yogurt mixture.
We can detect strong amount of ginger aroma while baking this.
Surprisingly and strangely to me, this cake is delicious too with its pronounced ginger flavor.

This... an old lady cake? Nay! My first taste has fully convinced that I had a wrong impression of this cake. Sorry, cake!

Unlike my aunties, my boy and I are not madly in love with ginger!!! Being so, this is why this ginger cake really surprises me because we were actually having intentions of having a second serve of this cake. With much persuasion, I have managed to convince myself and my boy to be kind and eventually resist eating too much of this cake and kept most of it for auntie J and K.

Once again... You want ginger, we will give you ginger... LOL!

Here's the recipe that is mostly adapted from the book, The Pastry Queen by Rebecca Rather.

Makes one 9 x 5 inches loaf or one 15 cm x 25 cm cake
2 large ripe pears, preferably Beurré Bosc
3 tbsp fresh ginger, 1/8-inch cubes or finely grated (I prefer to grate mine)
1/3 cup buttermilk or regular yogurt
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract or 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
zest of 1 lemon
zest of 1 orange
300g (2 cups) all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup or 125g unsalted butter, at room temperature
125g caster sugar (reduced from 200g or 1 cup)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 350°F or 160°C fan forced. Line loaf or cake pan with baking paper.

Peel, core, and cut the pears into 1/4 inch (or 0.5 cm) cubes. Stir the pears and ginger together in a medium bowl.

Pour the buttermilk or yogurt into a measuring cup and stir in the vanilla and all the zest.

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt.

Using a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl on medium high speed. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating for 20 secs between each addition. Add the flour mixture alternately with buttermilk mixture, beating on low speed just until combined after each addition. Fold in the ginger-pear mixture.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake about 55 mins for the 9 x 5 inches loaf and 50 mins for the 15 x 25 cm cake until a skewer inserted into the middle of the loaf / cake comes out clean. Cool the bread in the pan for 5 mins. Invert the bread onto a baking rack.

Make sure that it is completely cool before cutting or it will crumble.

To store, cool the bread completely before covering it tightly with plastic wrap for storage. The bread will keep up to 3 days at room temperature, or up to 3 weeks if frozen. Thaw the bread completely at room temperature and reheat it slowly in a 300°F oven about 15 mins.

Happy Baking
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  1. Amazing! I love everything about ginger!

  2. Get well soon and take more rest.. The boys also got cough and flu.. It's the sick season now.. Your ginger pear cake looks so moist and buttery..I can imagine myself eating a few slices with a cup of hot Milo, yummmzzz...

  3. Zoe, I'd like a little square right now!!!

  4. I reckon ginger is pretty expensive in Melbourne....wonder how it'll taste with pears though. Yours look yum!

  5. Haha, I believe my husband would love this ginger cake. He has been asking me to bake a ginger cake and I go, Eww... Although I absolutely love ginger but not in cakes! However, now that I saw your ginger pear cake, it did look appealing. Thanks Zoe for opening my eye ;-)

  6. Ackkkk on this side of the world the weather is getting hotter *sigh* Hope you're feeling better . Yeah , most oldies love ginger , wait , does it mean I'm an oldie , too lol Love ginger and I adore ginger cookies so this cake is right up to my alley . I'll have to try this sometime !

  7. Hi Zoe,
    Hope you have recovered from flu.
    This cake recipe is interesting with added fresh ginger. While I like to add more ginger in making Chinese dessert (tong sui), I've not tasted similar cake with ginger. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Ginger & pear? Such a unique combi, Zoe! I'm a fan of ginger too. xoxo

  9. Delicious ginger cake....... It is soft and moist one and love this ginger flavored cake... :)

  10. yumm, hope you are feeling better now

  11. YUM! I'm a fan of ginger and can imagine that warm waffing smell of ginger as you open the oven and take this delicious dense cake out! I wouldn't have thought of the pear and ginger combo but I think of how it would work! I love dense crumbly cakes, such a joy to eat them!

  12. sorry to hear that you're unwell. Rug up and have a speedy recovery. perhaps ginger tea will help.

  13. So sorry.. I hope you are feeling better. Melbourne weather is really pretty bad sometimes, maybe more often than sometimes :)
    This cake would have definitely made me feel better.

  14. Hi Zoe, Hope you're getting better by now :) I definitely want to try this yummy cake for use.

  15. Oh my, the cake looks absolutely moist & stunning. Love it.
    Enjoy & have a great weekend dear.
    Blessings, Kristy

  16. Good god, another delicious cake. I wish I had a slice of that now with a warm cup of coffee.
    Hope you have a great w/end, hon! xo

  17. We've had that cough going around and around the family. Just when I thought we kicked it, the little guy started coughing again today.

    Also coincidentally, I have a very similar cake sitting on my counter right now! But the pears are caramelized and poured overtop the ginger cake.

  18. Hi Zoe,
    I do not bake ginger cake very often, as the kids do not fancy ginger in cakes! I don't mind having a slice or two, and with the pear, sounds really good!
    Hope you are much better now! Take care!

  19. Hi Zoe, hope you have recovered from your bout of flu. Am touched that you still took time despite not feeling well to do up this blog post. I don't really like ginger and that will be the last thing I would think of using it in my bake. But if your little boy would even like to have a second helping, I believe this cake must be nice!

  20. Hello Zoe, sorry to hear you are feeling under the weather! Hope u feel better soon. xoxo

  21. wonderful and moist slices of pear cake

  22. Zoe, I do remember your ginger loving auntie! But this gingery cake is not for me. Only ginger chicken I like hee..hee...