This is my favourite kind of cake I must say, the one that truly warms my heart: poached pear pound cake! Full of fall flavours, made using only a few simple ingredients really easily and quickly. I love loaf cakes and adjusting a good base recipe (that is equal amount of sugar, flour, egg, butter) with spice and fruit pairings is something I absolutely enjoy during the recipe development. This one is a wonderful fall edition, you will love it!
Cinnamon and orange zest infused poached pears in a simply yet super delicious loaf cake that is packed with vanilla and cardamon. The ultimate, easy fall recipe you need: Poached pear pound cake!
My Top 5 Baking Tips for home bakers
- Read the recipe carefully including my tips and recommendations on how to avoid and fix typical issues during baking
- Avoid using substitutes and changing the recipe unless you are aware of how to fully reformulate the recipe in order to keep the balance in texture as well as flavour. Reducing sugar, replacing egg, using milk instead of cream, using poor quality chocolate etc. will all have an impact on your baking
- For consistent, happy baking experience always measure your ingredients with the help of a Digital scale. Cup measurement is provided as an indicative figure only and might be used for less complex and large batch recipes however it is not an appropriate method for more delicate, complex pastries
- Did you know that most home ovens can significantly under or oven run? Also, oven temperature hugely drops when opening the oven door therefore it is recommended to always pre-heat the oven above the required baking temperature.
- Temperature is so important when it comes to baking and accurate oven temperature is key, can make or break any recipe. Make sure you invest into an inexpensive Digital oven thermometer to avoid under baked, burnt, sad looking desserts
First let’s start with some important tips regarding the ingredients of this Poached pear Pound cake recipe
- Butter: Use always unsalted as you want to be in control of the quantity of the salt. I am using 82% fat content butter in all my recipes. In this recipe butter needs to be at room temperature which technically means soft enough to be able to cream but not too soft or runny so avoid last minute microwaving
- Granulated sugar: For all my loaf cakes I use simple, white granulated sugar, nothing fancy or expensive. If you want to learn about the different types of sugar and how to use them in baking, please read my article in here
- Egg: Room temperature as always
- Vanilla bean paste: Vanilla is wonderful in this cake however please please avoid using artificial vanilla! There are several great brands for fine, pure vanilla, I use Nielsen massey which I love and really recommend. I use vanilla bean paste instead of vanilla extract which has lovely vanilla bits in there too
- Flour: If you have self raising flour available in your country, feel free to use that. I am using pasty flour but AP can work too, they are so called “soft flour” which are low on protein resulting in delicate, tender texture. If you want to be a Pro when it comes to deciding what type of flour to use in your baking, please read my article in here
- Baking powder: If you are using self raising flour, then no baking powder is needed. On the other hand, if you can’t find it in your local supermarket then feel free to use ½ teaspoon baking powder with pasty flour or AP flour
- Almond flour: I like adding almond flour to fall theme cakes, it always gives a bit of marzipan taste profile to cakes. It is worth to buy good quality ground almond meal, without skin. If it is not available, replace it with equal amount of flour
- Zest of orange: Using lemon or orange zest is my favourite flavouring to spice up my recipes, it makes the desserts wonderfully flavourful and aromatic. Make sure you use organic orange (or one which has no chemicals on the skin) and only grate the orange colour part of the skin, but not the white
- Cardamon: If you are not using cardamon in your cakes this time of the year, you are missing out! Beautiful, aromatic spice goes well with almost everything, try it!
- Poached pear: Making poached pear is so easy! Cook 2 pears in a lovely syrup that is loaded with cinnamon and orange zest. Makes such a difference! Read the details below.
Now let’s continue with 3 important tips for the technique of making this Poached pear Pound cake recipe
It’s a super simple recipe and don’t have to overthink however there are some important notes worth considering.
1. How to poach pears
Start with peeling 2 pears. Ideally chose ripe or underripe pears for poaching, if they’re overripe, they will be too soggy after cooking. Pay attention to the sizes too, they should not be too big in comparison to the size of your loaf tin. Worth to try them into the loaf tin and make sure that there is enough space left for the cake a well. Prepare the poaching syrup by boiling water, sugar and cinnamon and orange zest. Cook pears in the poaching liquid over medium heat for 5-10 minutes, do not walk away but pay attention to the consistency of the pears. Make sure they won´t get over cooked. It is very important that after the poaching process you place the pears on paper towels, that will soak the unnecessary liquids in. I would highly recommend to use quite a few paper towels and try to get your poached pears as dry as possible as too much liquid can result in underbaked cake. If your cake won't bake even after 60 minutes it is because too much liquid stayed in the poached pears. I have been there before so please do not skip this step.
2. How to make pound cake
Pound cake or Loaf cake is a type of cake definitely worth mastering for every home baker. Moist, dense but not heavy, buttery with velvety crumb, incredible delicious. Can be spiced up in a thousand different ways, can be drizzled with flavourful syrups, lemon pound cake or lemon drizzle being the most popular one probably. The basic pound cake recipe is super easy and simple, equal amount of butter, sugar, egg and flour. There are a 10 tips I would like to share with you to master pound cake.
- Ingredients must be all measures with a Digital scale
- Eggs as well as butter must be on room temperature
- Butter and sugar should be beaten with an Electric hand mixer for a good 3-5 minutes until fluffy
- Egg should not be over beaten, once you add eggs into the mixture, beat for a 30 seconds until fully incorporated but stop beating the mixture after that
- Sift dry ingredients before adding to the mixture
- Dry ingredients must be folded in by hands (using Rubber spatula). Do not use a mixer at this point
- Grease Loaf pan in advance
- Pre-heat oven 15 minutes in advance
- Do not open the oven door during baking
- After 60 minutes check the middle of the loaf cake with a toothpick whether it is done
3. How to assemble this poached pear pound cake
Start with poaching pears and as mentioned above, make sure the poached pears are fully dried out with paper towels before using them in the cake. They are dry enough when touching them with paper towel, the paper towel stays dry.
Once the loaf cake batter is done, pour it into the greased loaf pan (I am using a I am using a 16 cm (bottom) 18 cm (top) loaf pan) then press the poached pears into the batter. Make sure that the pears are standing straight so while the cake bakes they don't fall one side or the other. Also pay attention that there is space at each end and also in between the pears for the cake batter to rise. Finally, try to arrange the cake batter equally on all sides before putting into the oven. Hint with flaked almonds (optional). As mentioned above, do not open the oven door while baking this poached pear pound cake however if for some reason your pear falls during baking, feel free to very quickly open the oven door and adjust.
Do you want more loaf recipes?
Check this stunning lemon meringue loaf recipe!
Do you want more poached pear recipes?
Check my easy peasy poached pear and walnut galette recipe, the easiest most delicious pie ever!
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Now let's see the recipe of this Poached pear Pound cake!
Poached pear pound cake
For the loaf
- 2 pears
- 500 g water
- 100 g Granulated sugar
- ½ Orange zest peeled
- 1 large Cinnamon stick
US customary cup measurement is an indicative figure only. Measure the ingredients with a digital scale by weight (gram). Baking is art but also science which requires precision and accuracy.
Start with poaching pears
- Prepare poaching syrup using all the ingredients listed. Peel pears and cook them in the syrup over medium heat for 5-10 minutes. Cooking time might need to be adjusted depending on the type of pear you use. Watch carefully, do not over cook.
- Place pears onto paper towels to soak the unnecessary liquid in. Make sure the pears are "dry" before placing them into the cake batter
Continue with the making pound cake batter
- Heat oven to 180 C / 356°F
- With an Electric hand mixer beat together room temperature butter, vanilla extract and sugar until it becomes creamy and pale then add eggs, one at a time. Do not over beat
- Sift in flour, almond flour, cardamon, baking powder then add orange zest and mix just until well combined with the help of a Rubber spatula
- Grease Loaf pan tin and pour batter in. I am using a 16 cm (bottom) 18 cm (top) loaf pan
- Press the poached pears into the batter. Pears should be standing straight and there should be space at each end and also in between the pears for the cake batter to rise. Try to arrange the cake batter equally on all sides before putting into the oven. Hint with flaked almonds (optional)
- Bake for 60 min or until skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean
- After loaf cooled down carefully remove from tin and hint with powder sugar (optional)