Slice this beautiful cake to serve alongside coffee at your next breakfast table. This cake is best stored in the refrigerator, but should be served at room temperature.
1 firm pears, such as anjou, halved and cored
½ lemon, for squeezing on pears
2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons and room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
¾ cup (7 to 8 ounces) almond paste, room temperature (purchased or use recipe on page 51)
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup plain greek yogurt
1 teaspoon pure almond extract
½ cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons water
¼ cup slivered almonds, toasted
Nutritional information per serving (based on 1 slice 24 servings per cake):
Calories 209 (46% from fat) • carb. 25g • pro. 4g • fat 11g
- sat. fat 5g • chol. 36mg • sod. 96mg • calc. 29mg • fiber 1g
Active Time: 20 minutes (not including preparing almond paste)
Inactive Time: 40 to 45 minutes
- Preheat oven to 350°F with the rack in the middle position. Lightly coat two loaf pans with softened butter or nonstick cooking spray. Reserve.
2. Insert the slicing disc at setting 3 into the work bowl of the food processor. Slice the pears on High; remove and reserve on a plate. Squeeze the lemon over the slices to prevent oxidation (browning).
- Put the flour, salt and baking soda into a small mixing bowl; whisk to combine. Reserve.
4. Remove the slicing disc and replace with the chopping blade. Put the butter and sugar into the work bowl and process on Low for 40 seconds, or until fluffy and creamy. Scrape down sides and then break apart the almond paste and add the pieces evenly to the mixture. Pulse 2 to 3 times and then process on High until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. If you notice that there are still clumps at this point, scrape down again and process for additional time.
- While running on Low, add the eggs, 1 at a time, and process until incorporated. Scrape down.
- Stir the yogurt and extract together. Add 1⁄3 of the dry ingredients to the work bowl and pulse 1 to 2 times to just incorporate. Add ½ of the yogurt mixture and pulse 1 to 2 times to just incorporate. Repeat in that fashion with the remaining dry ingredients and yogurt.
- Once batter is sufficiently mixed, divide between the two prepared loaf pans. Top each with the sliced pears, overlapping slightly, in two columns from top to bottom.
- Bake in the preheated oven until baked through and golden at the edges, about 40 to 45 minutes. Cool on wire rack for about 10 to 15 minutes.
- While cakes are cooling, prepare the glaze. Whisk together the sifted confectioners’ sugar with water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until desired consistency.
- Remove slightly cooled cakes from pans. Brush or by using a spatula, spread the glaze onto the top of each cake. Sprinkle with slivered almonds. Allow to cool completely before serving.