Thursday, January 21, 2010

Butternut Pear Cake

I've posted about this recipe before, but now...I've had some fun with the recipe, and would like to preserve my take on this. This is absolutely one of my favorite muffin recipes - so fresh, so different.

My original post is here. The original recipe is here. (The original recipe includes one for icing. It looks tasty, but I've never tried it. We're not big Frosting People here.)

I had a butternut squash and a pint of pearsauce that had to be taken care of. The first thing that came to mind was this recipe! A few tweaks...a few close calls...and out came an enormous cake. I'll most likely freeze half of it.

Since I had to get rid of an entire butternut squash, I went ahead and seeded and chopped the entire thing. Then I mixed it with enough sugar for a double batch, and pulled out a third of it to make a batch later. Leaving me with...enough for a double batch. (After tasting the cake, I'm not sure I put enough sugar in. The pear sauce is rather sweet, but...use your own judgement.) Applesauce could, of course, be substituted, or (as the original recipe suggests) olive oil. (I think I might prefer the olive oil - it gives a more pleasant crumb.)

Butternut Pear Cake
(Adapted from Jamie Oliver's "Jamie at Home")
Makes 1 large sheet pan, or approximately 4 dozen muffins
(If you'd like less than 4 DOZEN muffins, cut this recipe in half!)

Approx. 1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, seeded and roughly chopped (skin on)
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
8 large eggs
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
5 cups all-purpose flour, unsifted
2 scant teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups pearsauce (or equivalent applesauce or olive oil)

Preheat your oven to 350 and spray a large sheet pan well with Pam.

1. Put your butternut squash chunks into a food processor, and grind into small pieces.
2. Remove the butternut squash to the bowl of your mixer. (I used my spatula-edged beaterblade and really can't say enough great things about that product.)
3. Carefully mix in the eggs, salt, flour, baking powder, cinnamon and pearsauce (or equivalent). Do not overbeat! (Note: if you cut this recipe in half, to the original size, this entire process can be done in your food processor.)
4. Pour your batter into your prepared pan and bake 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out batter-free. (A few crumbs are good.)

Let cool on a rack, and enjoy!
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