In a recent thread about sour cherries, galleygirl mentioned that Laurie, who is the originator of the famous pear "tart," had told her it works well with sour cherries. I had a couple of cans of tart cherries in water on hand, so I made this Sunday morning for brunch with some guests.
I drained the cherries but did not pat them dry, and pushed as many as I could fit into the batter. I didn't change anything about the recipe except to sprinkle some brown sugar op top before putting it in the oven (I would have added a bit of almond extract to play up the cherries, but I had run out). My cake was done in 45 minutes. When I removed the sides of the springform pan, I was a bit concerned about its being overdone because the sides were fairly well beowned and a bit crusty. As it happened, the cake was perfectly moist, thanks to the juicy, soft cherries, and everyone really enjoyed it. The sides and edges *were* a bit crusty and crunchy, in an entirely pleasant way that was a nice contrast to the soft center of the cake. The brown sugar added a pleasant, if only slight, crunch to the top.
It wasn't particularly sweet (since the sour cherries didn't add the sweetness pears would), but it was perfect for brunch or to have with coffee or tea. If I were to make the sour cherry version (or make it with another tart fruit) to serve for dessert, I'd probably up the sugar from 3/4 cup to 1 cup.
Here's a verbatim copy of the recipe galleygirl originally posted:
Laurie's Pear Tart
3 or 4 ripe juicey pears....
Peel,core and cut into sixths, or eighths
1 stick butter
3/4 c. sugar
2 eggs, one at a time...
1 c. flour
1 teasoon baking powder
1/2 t. salt...
Add to butter mixture.
Spray an 8" (important) spring form pan with Pam...Spread the batter in it..Now, in a pinwheel pattern, press the slices of pear, peeled side up, into the batter...Cram in as many as you can; since the batter rises and covers the pears, there's no points given for style here(g)...The more pears, the moister the cake will be.
Bake at 350 degrees til a skewer comes out clean, about an hour...If you have any doubts, UNDERBAKE....This is a whole different animal if it dries out...Then it's just a cake; correctly done, you'll love it...It's just one of those recipes that is greater than the sum of it's parts. really. Ask my Dad...;)