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Upside-down Pear Gingerbread

Yields8 Servings

 2 Tbsp butter
 2 Tbsp Roger's Golden syrup, corn syrup or honey
 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
 1-2 ripe but firm pears (or tart apples), thinly sliced
 1/4 cup butter, softened
 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
 1 large egg
 1/4 cup dark molasses
 2 tsp grated fresh ginger, or 1 tsp powdered ginger
 1 tsp vanilla
 1 cup all-purpose flour
 1 tsp baking soda
 1 tsp cinnamon
 1/4 tsp salt
 3/4 cup buttermilk or plain yogurt, thinned with milk

Preheat the oven to 350°F and spray an 9 or 10-inch round cake pan or deep pie plate with nonstick spray.


To make the topping, melt the butter, syrup and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat or microwave it until it’s smooth. (Or combine them in the bottom of the pan, put it in the oven until it melts, then take it out and stir it with a fork until it’s smooth.) Pour the mixture over the bottom of the pan and arrange the pear slices on top, placing them tightly together – they shrink a bit as they cook, so you can even get away with overlapping them.


To make the gingerbread batter, stir or beat the butter and brown sugar in a medium bowl until well blended. Add the egg, molasses, ginger (if you're using dry, save it to add with the cinnamon) and vanilla and beat until thoroughly combined. It may look kind of curdled - that’s OK.


In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, dry ginger (if you're using it) and salt. Add half of the dry ingredients to the molasses mixture and stir by hand (or on low with an electric mixer) just until the batter is combined. Add the buttermilk, and then the remaining dry ingredients in the same manner. Pour the batter over the sliced pears.


Bake the cake for about 40 minutes, until the top is springy to the touch. Let it stand for 5 minutes, then run a knife around the edge of the cake and invert it onto a plate while it’s still warm. (If it cools too much and sticks to the pan, warm it in the oven again before you try to invert it.) Don’t worry if any pear slices stick to the bottom of the pan – simply peel them out and place them back on top of the cake where they belong.


Serve with whipped cream. Serves 8.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 0