Sunday, 24 June 2012

caramelised pear, roasted walnuts and goats cheese cake

... i've been wracking my brain, thinking about how I can use the wonderful Capricorn Somerset Goats Cheese in a sweet dish... but I realise i've been trying too hard... goats cheese has a natural affinity with sweetness... it works beautifully with figs and has that creamy consistency which is perfect for baking with sugar...

... I have always loved a challenge too... when I was at fashion college (yes folks - I do indeed have a masters degree in fashion design from a famous London fashion school) one of my favourite tasks was when we were all given a large box filled with fabric remnants and had 3 chances to dip-in and pull out fabric... we then had to make an outfit with those fabrics only... ahh such fond memories of that pacer-mint striped Dior-inspired dress and cape... and so it is with the #CapricornChallenge hamper... to use ingredients given to you and be as creative as you dare...

caramelised pear, roasted walnuts and goats cheese cake
... two classic goats cheese friendly ingredients from the hamper are conference pears and walnut pieces... and here they are in a sweet cake with a twist... I love this cake because its one of those cakes which is more like a pudding and can be eaten warm with custard or chilled with cream... divine!

1lb pears - peeled and diced
8oz light brown sugar
6oz butter or margarine
2 eggs - beaten
2 tablespoons milk
9oz self raising flour
100g walnut pieces
100g goats cheese - rind cut off and crumbled
1 teaspoon cinnamon

- pre heat the oven to 180C and lay the walnut pieces out on a baking tray, sprinkled with a little sugar and bake for 8 minutes

- place a nob of butter in a pan, add 2oz of the sugar and let it melt for 5-8 mins

- add the pears, stir and let them caramelise for 8 mins

- in a large bowl, cream the butter and remaining sugar, add half the eggs, combine and then half the flour and combine, add the rest of the egg followed by the rest of the flour and cinnamon and stir

- add the milk to slacken then stir in the walnuts, goats cheese and pears

- pour the batter into a large, greased and lined, loose-bottomed spring-form tin and bake in the oven for 45 mins or until golden and risen

eat and of course, enjoy!



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