Recipe courtesy of Scott Ferguson

Perky Pear Pound Cake

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 3 hr 30 min
  • Prep: 30 min
  • Inactive: 2 hr
  • Cook: 1 hr
  • Yield: 12 to 16 servings
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Ingredients

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan

Flour, for pan

2 cups sugar

6 eggs

3 1/2 cups sifted cake flour

3 ripe pears, peeled, cored, and grated

1 tablespoon pure vanilla bean paste (recommended: Nielsen-Massey)

2 tablespoons candied ginger puree (recommended: Royal Pacific)

1/2 cup pear brandy, divided

Pear preserves, heated and strained, for garnish

Chocolate Glaze, recipe follows

Marzipan pears with candied ginger leaves, for garnish, optional

Chocolate Glaze:

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup light corn syrup

4 ounces dark chocolate (recommended: Guittard)

5 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

Directions

  1. Grease and flour an 8-cup tube pan and set aside. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. In the bowl of a mixer, cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, until incorporated. Slowly stir in flour, being careful not to over-beat. Add pears, vanilla bean paste, candied ginger puree, and 1/4 cup pear brandy; mix well. Transfer to prepared pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then unmold onto a cooling rack. Cool completely. Douse with another 1/4 cup pear brandy then glaze with warmed pear preserves. Let pear glaze set. Pour Chocolate Glaze over. When set, remove cake from cooling rack and place it on a serving plate. Garnish with marzipan pears with candied ginger leaves, if desired.

Chocolate Glaze:

  1. Heat sugar and corn syrup together in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved. Add chocolate and remove from heat. Stir in butter gradually, and then add confectioner's sugar. Cool slightly and pour over cake.