This recipe (pictured above, in the center) is adapted from one my mother gave me. Originally known as “Babe’s Apple Cake,” it’s been modified to feature pears and the amount of sugar has been reduced. It’s still a sweet start to the day, but is an easy everyday dessert. Glam it up with a scoop of ice cream for extra points at the dinner table.
Cooking spray or butter for greasing pan
9¼ ounces fresh-milled whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
½ cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups chopped juicy-ripe pear (about 4 pears)
1 cup chopped toasted walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350℉. Grease a 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray or butter.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg. In another bowl, mix together the eggs, sugars, zest, oil, and vanilla. Mix the dry ingredients into the liquids. When combined, stir in the pears and walnuts. The batter will very thick and chunky.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread it out evenly (it will spread more as it bakes). Bake for about 40 to 50 minutes, until the top is dry and golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean, with just a crumb or two clinging to it. Let cool in pan for 30 minutes before cutting.