St. Francis Winery & Vineyards

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WINE CLUB : Desserts : Caramelized Pear & Almond Upside Down Cake

Caramelized Pear & Almond Upside Down Cake

Pairs With:

For the Pears:
3 Bosc Pears
¾ cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pinch of salt

For the Batter:
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
⅓ cup almond paste, packed
2 eggs, room temperature
6 tablespoons butter, room temperature
¾ cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


For the Pears: Peel, core and dice the pears into ½ inch pieces. Place the ¾ cup sugar, 3 tablespoons water and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice into a 9-inch sauté pan. Cook the sugar mixture over high heat swirling and shaking the pan slightly so the sugar caramelizes evenly until it is a light honey color. Carefully add the pears to the caramelized sugar in a single layer and cook over medium heat for five minutes. Be careful not to shake or disturb too much. Remove from the heat, sprinkle with vanilla and salt, and let cool in the pan for at least 15 minutes.

For the Batter: Place the sugar and almond paste in a mixer with the paddle attachment and mix for two minutes. Add the butter in increments, and cream for another two minutes or until the mix is light in color and smooth. Add the eggs one at a time but be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl between egg additions. Add the vanilla and combine. Sift the flower and baking powder together, and add to the mixer, mixing until just combined. Place the batter in a piping bag.

To finish: Grease the inside of six 3 ¼ x 1 ½ inch ramekins with butter. Divide the caramelized pears and sauce between the ramekins pressing the pears lightly into the bottom. Pipe the batter so that it is ¾ to the top of each ramekin. Bake at 375°F for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven to cool. To serve, reheat for a few minutes in the oven or just until warm. Turn out onto a plate and serve with vanilla ice cream.


Perfectly suited for St. Francis Sonoma County Port.


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