Pear & Hummingbird Cake

I've been craving pears and oranges lately, just slices of cold fruit on the hot days while the renovation works go on around me. Sometimes I pair them with an ice-cold glass of fresh lemonade or pineapple flavoured water, and my parents would join me on the patio while we discuss interior decor and the technical aspects of raising a roof.
So to nobody's surprise, our bottom refrigerator shelf is filled with fruit that's starting to bruise! I've got an abundance of pears, and I'm not entirely sure what I should do with them. There are pies, tarts, cakes, muffins, pizzas, etc... yet I have no time. 
Last night, while watching Grey's Anatomy reruns, I decided to just quickly whip up a really easy (yes satisfying) cake for my mum to serve to friends who might drop by for their morning coffees or high tea. Also, I kinda need to clear out those pears. I paired up (heh) a pear and a Hummingbird Cake, recipe from the Hummingbird Bakery cookbook, a recipe I've tried before while yielded amazing results. Only it didn't look so pretty, so I couldn't bear to share any of those pictures here. Call it vanity, if you must. 
So here's my take on the Hummingbird Cake with Pears: 
Pear & Hummingbird Cake
Adapted from the Hummingbird Bakery cookbook
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 300ml sunflower oil
  • 3 large ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 300g self raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g tinned pineapple, chopped
  • 100g shelled pecans, chopped
  • 1 golden pear, chopped, plus slices to decorate
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 9 inch round baking tin with butter and parchment paper
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, eggs, oil, mashed bananas, and cinnamon and beat until incorporated
  3. Beat in the flour and vanilla, mixing until just combined
  4. Then beat in the pineapple, pecans and pear bits
  5. Line the bottom of the baking tin with the pear slices, arrange as you like, then pour the cake batter over. Smooth the top and pop it in the oven for 40 minutes, or until a skewer poked through at an angle comes out clean
  6. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 15 minutes, then turn it over onto a wire cooling rack. Cool completely before removing onto your cake plate, dust with ground cinnamon before serving
I left it overnight on the counter last night, wrapped in a clean cloth to keep it sanitary. This morning, before heading out to work, I dusted it with cinnamon, cut myself a slice and had it for a very decadent breakfast. I've decided to forgo the cream-cheese frosting which is customarily served with the cake, however if you want to, use this recipe and cover the cake as you like with the frosting. I'd just like to tell you that the amazing flavours of the actual cake are likely to be overpowered by the frosting should you choose to do so. Also, you won't be able to have it for breakfast (guilt-free). 
To each his own, and I really do hope you give this recipe a shot as it's so bloody amazing. 
Lots of love, happy weekday, 

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