This is a pudding that I have been making on and off in various formats for years and it has always been well received! The Slow Cooker Pear and Almond Sponge recipe here works particularly well in a slow cooker as it really creates a super soft and light sponge.
What’s more, as it bakes slowly over a couple of hours you can be getting on with other things whilst it’s in. So it’s great if you are serving it hot as dessert!
Pears are a beautifully light fruit but work really well in puddings as they tend to retain their shape and texture and, coupled with the sweetness of almonds this is a really delicious combination. Also, all the golden yellow fruit and nuts on the top make it look really appetising when you serve it!
I think one of the reasons this is a great pudding to make is because it’s so versatile. You can serve this hot as a traditional pudding or, simply allow this to cool and it’s a lovely soft sponge cake to cut and enjoy over a few days.
Slow Cooker Pear and Almond Sponge
- 400 g pears – tinned
- 140 g flour – self raising
- 30 g almonds – finely ground into a flour
- 170 g butter
- 140 g sugar
- 3 eggs – medium
- 3 tbsp milk
- 25 g almonds – flaked
- 8 tbsp syrup – agave or golden syrup will work equally well
- ½ tsp vanilla essence
- 2 tsp almond essence
- 1 tsp baking powder
Slow cooker preparation
- Grease the slow cooker pot with butter until about half way up the edge of the pot, this should cover the area where the sponge will rise.
- Line the bottom of the slow cooker with a sheet of baking parchment. To get the required shape, draw around the lid of the slow cooker and then cut in about 2cm from the edge of lined area. This should fit neatly in the bottom on top of the butter.
- Beat the eggs, then cream in the sugar and softened butter. Gradually add in the flour, ground almond flour and baking powder and fold this into the mixture. Add the milk to create a smooth batter.
- Add the almond and vanilla essence and fold into the cake batter well and set aside whilst you create the cake topping.
- To create the cake topping in the bottom of the slow cooker, pour in the syrup and evenly sprinkle the flaked almonds around the dish. Cut the tinned pears into 1 cm slices and arrange these evenly over the flaked almonds and syrup.
- Spoon the cake batter over the pears and almonds smoothing out the surface to produce an even bake.
- Put a few sheets of kitchen paper or a clean tea towel over the top of the slow cooker and secure this with the lid. This will catch the excess condensation as the cake bakes and prevent the sponge becoming soggy.
- Set the cooker to high and leave for 2 hours. Don't lift the lid too much to check the bake in this time to ensure you get a nice even temperature throughout the bake time.
- After two hours, check the cake is cooked through by gently pressing on the middle of the sponge, which should bounce back to it's original shape or pushing a skewer into the middle which should come out clean.
- Once baked, run a knife around the edge of the sponge then place a large plate or board over the top of the pot. Carefully, remove the pot from the slow cooker stand and turn upside down. The sponge should come away cleanly from the pot onto the plate beneath. Peel away the baking parchment from the top of the cake and you should have a glazed and golden almond and pear topping.
- Serve hot as a sponge pudding with cream or custard or, allow to cool and slice.