There’s something magical about preparing a cake from the base up. We love the fact that the top starts on the bottom, and when it’s flipped over it looks amazing. The pear and ginger combination in this recipe tastes particularly fine, too.






Skill level

Average: 3.6 (35 votes)


125 g butter, plus extra for greasing
65 g (⅓ cup) brown sugar
2 eggs
225 g (1½ cups) self-raising flour
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tbsp lemon juice
icing sugar, to serve


2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp brown sugar
4 firm pears, peeled, cored and sliced
2 tbsp lemon juice

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Cooling time: 30 minutes

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Butter a 22 cm spring form cake tin, line the sides and bottom with greaseproof paper and butter lightly.

To prepare the pears place the butter and brown sugar in a medium saucepan and cook over a low heat for 1–2 minutes, until the sugar dissolves. Add the pears and lemon juice and cook for 3–4 minutes, stirring all the time. Remove from the heat set aside for 15 minutes or until cool.

Arrange pear slices in the base of the prepared cake tin. Reserve any cooking liquid.

Cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one by one, fully incorporating the first before adding the second. Sift the flour and ginger together and fold in carefully. Add lemon juice and enough cooking liquid from the pears to form a soft cake mix.

Spoon into the cake tin over the pear slices and bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes. Test the cake by inserting a skewer. If it comes out clean, the cake is ready; if it doesn’t, cook for a further 5 minutes and test again.

Allow the cake to cool for 15 minutes, then carefully remove from tin and turn over to reveal the top. Dust with icing sugar to serve.