Pear Snacking Cake With Brown Butter Glaze

Pear Snacking Cake With Brown Butter Glaze

This moist and tender cake has a similar texture to pumpkin or banana bread, with a delicate pear flavor scented with nutmeg and a touch of clove. But the real star is the brown butter glaze, which is nutty and rich, tasting a little like butterscotch, with a strong vanilla sweetness. The cake keeps well when stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, though the glaze will lose its snap from the chill. Or, bake the cake ahead, then glaze it a few hours before serving for the best texture. You can freeze the unglazed cake as well, up to a month ahead.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 12 persons



  1. Step 1

    Prepare the cake: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-2-inch square or 9-inch-round pan and line bottom with parchment paper.
  2. Step 2

    Using an electric mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy. Add sugars, baking powder, salt, vanilla, nutmeg, cloves and baking soda and beat for 1 minute. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  3. Step 3

    With the mixer on low, beat in half the pears, and then beat in the flour until smooth. Beat in remaining pears, then the oats, beating until well incorporated. Beat in nuts.
  4. Step 4

    Spread batter in the prepared pan and bake until the top springs back when lightly pressed in the center of the cake, 40 to 50 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Step 5

    Prepare the glaze: In a small saucepan, melt butter, then let it simmer until the foam on top falls to the bottom of the pot and turns brown, about 3 minutes. It will smell nutty and rich when it’s ready.
  6. Step 6

    Whisk in brown sugar until it dissolves. Whisk in confectioners’ sugar, cream, vanilla and salt until you’ve got a thick glaze with the texture of hot fudge sauce. Spread this over the cooled cake. Let the glaze set for at least 2 hours before serving.