pear & raspberry tea cakes

teacakes sound so naff. but kugelhopf doesn’t. it has resonances of the old country. wherever that may have been. and all things sweet and heavy which come from the east. and when i saw these teacakes in the ottolenghi cookbook i was filled an overwhelming nostalgia for a time and a place which never existed as well as an insatiable hunger…for teacakes. i began the search for some mini kugelhopf tins. fortuitously there is a baking supplies store conveniently located near my house where the aforementioned tins were also conveniently located. it had been a while since i last turned on the oven…after some failed sourdough i felt it best to keep a low profile. after spending days up to my arms in fermented yeast, i felt a little numb to the whole exercise. and my self-esteem took quite a battering when my first sourdough, albeit a prototype, still in its embryonic/learning-what-not-to-do phase, failed to do any of the things it was required to do, including but not exclusive to, working. but as soon as i saw these teacakes i was suddenly filled with a sense of possibility and hope and i heard hundreds of voices in my head chanting “yes we can”. moved as i was by my own internal dialogue, i decided it was time to get back up on the dying horse and rediscover beauty. i looked to the truest most pure source of beauty i know – butter, sugar and vanilla. and surely enough, there it was. and here it is.


180g unsalted butter

260g plain flour

1tsp baking powder

1/2tsp baking soda

1/4tsp salt

160g caster sugar

2 eggs

1tsp vanilla extract

170ml sour cream

2 pears halved, cored and cut into 1cm bits

250g raspberries

first preheat your oven to 170 degrees. grease 6 mini kugelhopf tins. you can use muffin tins if you cant find the “proper” tins. no one will judge. but you will end up with muffins rather than teacakes. no one will judge you, you will only be cheating yourself. then prepare your fruit and by that i mean open your bag of frozen raspberries and cut up your pears. pears in small dice…they will stay the size they are so cut them the size that will make sense to your mouth

sift together the flour, baking powder and soda and salt. set this aside. cream the butter and sugar until light and gorgeous. mix in the eggs one at a time and then the vanilla and beat well.

gently fold in a third of the flour mixture, then a third of the sour cream. continue this until they are both mixed in and the batter is smooth. finally fold in the pears.

scatter some raspberries onto the base of the tin.

then spoon the mix into the tins and fill it almost to the top and smooth it over.

then press about 5 raspberries into the the mix so they are just below the surface.

bake for 25-30 minutes. check with a stick of any description you can find to make sure they are cooked through. not that there is anything wrong with raw cake batter. but by then, you may have had enough raw dough and will be looking for something more cooked through

let them cool before, in the immortal words of nigella, “applying to face”

nb. smoo – time this took was roughly an hour, including oven time as well as spoon-licking time, raspberry grazing time, and marvelling at the quality sara lee’s frozen raspberries which are remarkably superior to creative gourmet (which seem to come in one large frozen clump as opposed to sara lee’s exquisite, physics-defying, individualised raspberries which have a flavour i n’ere before tasted from a frozen berry) and cheaper.
nbb. i also made a ras-white-choc, replacing the pear with raspberries and inserting 100g white chocolate finely chopped – the berries bled and the chocolate was a bit of overkill. but it was still sublime – as only raspberry and white chocolate can be.


11 Responses to “pear & raspberry tea cakes”

  1. 1 Matthieu May 19, 2010 at 11:44 pm

    In the immortal words of Stimpy, ” For joy!!”. These are delicious, even if i got to eat little more than a little tiny bit due to them being prepared for someone else. No, no, its alright, cous cous and sticks is fabulous this time of year. And m’love i will make you a proving oven on the weekend, complete with automagics.

  2. 2 germima May 19, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    Oh schleps these will be lovely when we go on our picnic. We are still going aren’t we? This looks lovely! I bet I could add some chickpeas and call it lunch. No dry deli turkey required 🙂

  3. 5 schlepseleh May 19, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    and i cannot wait – will it be like the chickens in grade three with glenice cooke? with a uv light to encourage hatching and a box to discourage prodding by small fingers? next i will combine all our loves… teacakes with sticks, a haloumi glaze and a dusting of couscous

  4. 6 pose May 19, 2010 at 11:56 pm

    what a partnership, a marriage of fruits so wonderful and yet so simple (plus requisite butter and sugar.) reminds me of a certain muffin that has not gone unmentioned, though perhaps unmade. i’m sure glad to see youre back on the proverbial baking horse.

    • 7 schlepseleh May 20, 2010 at 12:00 am

      as it happens it was inspired by that very muffin… the original recipe called for peach and raspberry but in the absence of an appropriate season, i substituted it with pear – to make the muffin-cake of my dreams. all it lacked was a crunchy top

  5. 8 mrs peabody May 20, 2010 at 12:05 am

    oh thank you for thinking of me dear. GERMima, id be delighted to come along. ill bring the glad-wrap

  6. 10 Berry May 20, 2010 at 12:50 am

    These look heavenly. I doff my chef hat to you.

  7. 11 smoo May 20, 2010 at 8:16 am

    What better way to spend a winter’s hour? Who but you would have thought of, and managed to find, mini kugelhopf tins? Class, class, class. FATB – always eloquence and elegance. Pity about the sourdough – stick to “let them eat cake” while you overcome the mini-setback.

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