Buttermilk Cakes Fruit Holiday Nuts Recipes

Pear Spice Cake with Walnut Praline Topping

Pear Spice Cake

Kid Table.  Can we talk about the Kid Table?  The Kid Table was something that I had to endure every holiday from the age of three to um…. present.  You know what the Kid Table is, right?

The integral family socialization tool.  The foundation of society.   The folding table and chairs circa 1943 that your Grandma busts out every every every Christmas.  Who sits at this pint sized table?  Certainly not Grandpa, Grandma, or any other high ranking family members.

It’s called the Kid Table for a reason.  It’s where you dump all the kids.  In the adult mind, I think it’s the “sit down, eat your Christmas dinner, and if you’re going to throw your Jello salad at each other, I prefer to ignore it” table.

The Kid Table still exists in my family.  One small catch:  there are no more kids in my family.

Let me just say that Christmas dinner at the Kid Table is now…. more awesome than ever!  Kid Table got cool.  Kid Table is now the place to be.  Boom… youth success!

There’s nothing like wine, family smack talk with your cool uncles, and stealing all of the thunder from the main table.  They would sooooo like to think they’re the main event.  False.  Kid Table… cooler than ever!

And now… Pear Spice Cake.


Pear Spice Cake


This recipe is adapted from an old school Gourmet Magazine recipe.  By ‘old school’, I’m talking early 1990’s.  Way back in the day, right?

The pears add a delicate flavor and lots of moisture, but the cake doesn’t exactly scream pear right in your face.  It’s more of an awesomely spice cake with an out of the world praline topping.  If you wanted to experiment with fruits like apricots, apples, raisins, I don’t think you could go wrong.

Pear Spice Cake

Pear Spice Cake with Walnut Praline Topping

adapted from Gourmet, December 1992

Print this Recipe!

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1  cups buttermilk
  • 3 pears, peeled, cored and diced into roughly 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 to 1 1/4 cups of fruit)
  • 1 cup walnuts (3 ounces), toasted , cooled, and finely chopped

Make cake:
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour bundt pan.

Sift together flour,  baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Beat together butter, sugar, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg in another bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes in a standing mixer or 4 with a handheld. Add yolks 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low, then add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately in batches, mixing well after each addition.  Fold in pear pieces and chopped walnuts.

Beat egg whites in another bowl with cleaned beaters until they just hold stiff peaks, then fold whites into batter gently but thoroughly.

Spoon batter into pan, smoothing top, and bake until a wooden pick or skewer comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack 10 minutes, then invert onto rack and cool completely.

Walnut Praline Topping

  • 3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1 cups walnuts, roughly chopped, toasted
Stir golden brown sugar, whipping cream and  1/2 cup butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat until smooth. Boil 3 minutes, stirring often. Stir in walnut pieces. Spoon warm topping over warm cake. Serve warm or at room temperature.