Did I feel a little guilty adapting aunt Cappy’s celestial spiced pear cake – moist, scrumptious, and straight-up delicious – into little, rum-spiked cupcakes for a friend’s birthday? The licentious crack of the rum bottle’s black lid as I opened it, the wickedly sensuous way the amber rum spilled over the pale butter cream frosting… Sure. I was naughty. But sometimes you have to be willing to take a good, pure recipe and muss it up a little. Sometimes, when you’re getting ready to make dinner in honor of your sauciest friend, you’ve got to take one for the team and be a little bad.
Aunt Cappy’s Spiced Pear Cake
1 1/4 c. vegetable oil
2 c. sugar
3 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. chopped canned pears (reserve syrup for glaze)
1 c. chopped pecans
1 tbsp. butter, room temperature
1 ½ c. confectioner’s sugar
2-3 tbsp. syrup from canned pears
Preheat oven to 325 F. In a mixing bowl, combine oil, sugar, and eggs, and beat well. Sift together flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add this to the creamed mixture and stir until blended. Add vanilla. Fold in pears and pecans. Grease and flour a 10” tube or Bundt pan, and spoon in the batter. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes, or until cake tests done. Let cake cool 20 minutes, then turn it onto a cake rack to cool completely. While the cake cools make the glaze. Blend the butter and confectioner’s sugar with enough syrup to make a smooth, slightly runny glaze. Drizzle glaze over the top of the cake, letting some run down the sides.
(The corrupted cupcakes took about 25 minutes. The remaining rum didn’t last long.)