Pear Butter Cake

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Like most gâteaux crafted by French home bakers, this rustic Pear Butter Cake is made extra tender with Président® butter. It’s elegant yet simple to put together. The pillowy, buttery cake is also beautiful with a layer of fresh pear slices. Served with a dollop of crème fraîche, this is the epitome of comfort baking à la française.

Pear Butter Cake
Makes 1 (9-inch) cake
  • ¾ cup (170 grams) Président unsalted
  • butter, softened
  • 1½ cups (300 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs (100 grams)
  • 1½ teaspoons (6 grams) vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon (4 grams) almond extract
  • ¾ cup (180 grams) crème fraîche
  • 2 cups (250 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons (7.5 grams) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon (2 grams) ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon (2.25 grams) kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon (1 gram) ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 green Anjou pear (276 grams), cored and sliced ⅛ inch thick (about 1½ cups)
  • Garnish: strained apricot preserves
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with baking spray with flour; line bottom of pan with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, stopping to scrape sides of bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in extracts. Stir in crème fraîche. (Mixture will look like it is breaking, but it is not.)
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, ginger, cardamom, and cloves. With mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating until well combined.
  4. Arrange pear slices in prepared pan, fanning along outer edge and then filling center. Spread batter onto pear slices, being careful not to move pear.
  5. Bake until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, about 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Invert onto a wire rack; brush with apricot preserves, if desired. Let cool completely.


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