Michelle: It's a sour cream pear and raspberry cake from Bourke Street Bakery.
Thanh: So this cake is from the Burch and Purchese book?
Michelle: Yep. I've got the book and this was the first recipe I tried.
Thanh: Wow, it's an amazing cake and I must go get the book.
Above is roughly how the conversation went between Michelle and myself at a food bloggers picnic at Albert Park. When I tasted the cake she had brought, I was hooked on how delicious it was. But due to the loud noise, we misheard each other and I thought that Burch and Purchese had started to make these simple desserts. Not only until later did we clear up that it was a Bourke Street Bakery Sour Cream Pear and Raspberry Cake which Michelle had made previously. That made far more sense as this cake is definitely in the style of Bourke Street Bakery.
This cake is a simple butter style cake but with a great texture and an amazing flavour. What got me was this recurring fragrant hint, and then a punch of tartness. I tried to guess the fruits in it, and the raspberry part was easy. But the other element, I just couldn't pick. When Michelle told me it was pear, I was quite surprised. I didn't know pear would taste so good in a cake. So, obviously I got the recipe and have made the cake many times since to great appreciation by everyone that's tried it.
Here are some tips to help you make the best cake possible.
*This recipe makes a huge cake. Even in the 28cm tin, it rises out of tin. You could put into two smaller tins even.
*The cake is quite sweet but I like it that way. I think any other berries besides raspberries won't work as well as the raspberry really punch through with a tartness that enhances this cake greatly.
*Michelle said the recipe required you to make your own stewed pears. She was lazy and just used canned pear and so did I. It tasted great with the canned pear and I would put even more than the recipe suggested. Lay out the pear neatly and evenly so that every piece of cake has some pear.
*I don't sift my flour and it doesn't seem to affect the cake.
*The raspberries can get a bit burnt during baking if they're exposed. Depends what you want to do but you can push the berries inside the cake but I like them a bit exposed as it's prettier and some burnt bits taste great.
*The cooking time for this cake seems to take a lot longer in my oven. It takes about 90 minutes sometimes.
Sour Cream Butter Cake with Pears and Raspberry
Recipe adapted from The Bakeanista
250g unsalted butter
355g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g sour cream
300g self-raising flour
1 can (approx 400g) of sliced pears
1 cup of raspberries
1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Line baking paper in a 28cm cake tin.
2. Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla extract until pale and creamy.
3. Add eggs, one at a time, making sure each one is completely incorporated before adding more.
4. Add the sour cream in two batches, then add the flour in two batches, until well combined.
5. Add mixture to cake tin. Arrange the pear wedges in an even circle around the tin. Sprinkle raspberries evenly.
6. Bake for 55 - 75 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean.
7. Remove from the oven to cool for about 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.