Upside-Down Spiced Maple Pear Sour Cream Cake is sweetly aromatic, warmly spiced, and perfect for fall.
If you’re looking for the perfect sweet treat to usher in fall, may I humbly suggest this cake. No, there are no apples or pumpkin in sight (sacrilegious, right?), but lovely pears are also in season right now and although they’re often overlooked, they’re the star of our show today. They deserve it.
What I love most about pears is their understated elegance. Their sweet fruity, floral flavor that’s somehow reminiscent of vanilla. Their aroma, which can be likened to the nectar of the gods. Their shape, which is sloping and graceful, like a swan. And the fact that even though they’re every bit as versatile as apples, they aren’t nearly as in-your-face as apples, constantly vying for your attention (and I have to admit, I nearly always give into the allure of the apple – they’re one of my absolute favorite fruits! But pears deserve a bit of attention too).
Pears are quiet, shy. They’re patiently waiting for you to meander by and pick one up to inhale its aroma, remember its lovely flavor, and buy a bag, imagining the possibilities.
Well, friends, this cake only uses a single pear, yet manages to showcase its lovely flavor. The sweet complexity of maple syrup is the perfect sweetener for this cake. A touch of warm spice compliments pear the same way it does apple or pumpkin. A touch of sour cream adds richness and density. All in all, it really is a beautiful fall cake.
What’s your favorite fall fruit?
- Pear Topping:
- 1 medium pear, quartered, cored, and thinly sliced (I used a red pear)
- 1 tablespoon grass-fed clarified butter (ghee)
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1 cup (115 g) almond flour
- ¼ cup (30 g) tapioca flour
- 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice mix
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- 4 tablespoons (57 g) grass-fed clarified butter (ghee), melted and cooled slightly
- 4 tablespoons (60 g) sour cream
- ¼ cup (60 ml) maple syrup
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Add all ingredients for the pear topping to an 8-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook (uncovered) until the pears are soft and syrupy, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Spread the pears out in an even layer in the bottom of the skillet and set aside to cool slightly. Once the pan is cooled, lightly grease the sides with a little bit of additional ghee.
- For the cake, whisk together the almond flour, tapioca flour, flaxseed meal, pumpkin pie spice mix, sea salt, and baking soda in a large bowl. Whisk together the ghee, sour cream, maple syrup, egg, and vanilla in a small bowl. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry half at a time, being careful not to overmix.
- Once mixed, immediately pour the batter out onto the pears and spread it out. Let it sit for 3 minutes (it will thicken).
- Bake until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Cool completely and then run a knife along the outside of the skillet. Invert the cake onto a platter and serve.