Pear And Blue Cheese Mini Cakes With Cardamom and Rosemary
Let me start by saying "thank you" for understanding my frustration last night and for your support which prevented me from banging my head against the computer screen or eating half the cheesecake I had baked earlier. I love the blogging community because whatever ails you, evening something trivial as losing your post, a lot of you came and offered advice, humor and great relief that I may not be a complete 'puter moron after all!
Now back to our regular programming.
It is no news that I have been hooked on blogging events… like an addict I impatiently await my directives every month and the creative and talented Meeta did not disappoint with her latest Monthly Mingle focusing on savory cakes. I was happy to come up with something that would combine my love of savory and sweet foods. Yes, B. and I do not live on desserts and pastries only….well except on sundays it seems like!
The first time my mom made a savory cake I thought it to be the strangest thing in the world…back then I already knew I would live for all things sweet! She would bake, slice thick and cubes perfect morsels of cakes with ham and gruyere, roasted red pepper and feta, crab and dill, etc…her combinations were endless. They became some my favorite items to make and serve with a glass of wine before dinner, at a cocktail party and other events involving finger foods. I regret not copying her recipe down when I visited this past Christmas and my parents are relax in the Alps I chose not to bither them with such a small inquiry. I figured I could easily come up with my own and so I went googling around. After reading many a savory cake recipe I finally settled on this one.
I already had an idea of what I wanted for this challenge: something sweet, something salty and one or two spices and/or herbs to complement them. I played around for a couple of days and came up with a dozen combinations of fruits such as figs/prosciutto, pineapple/ham, peppers/feta, seafood/mascarpone. The possibilities are endless, limited only by your imagination. I decided upon pear and blue cheese because of their classic sense of companionship. I love cardamom in everything, especially crushed up over roasted pear, and the grassy flavor rosemary goes well with both fruit and blue cheese.Instead of my mom’s usually little cubed morsels, I chose to bake these in regular sized muffin tins.
Pear And Rosemary Mini Cakes With Cardamom and Rosemary, adapted from Regal:
Makes 12 muffin sized cakes
200 gr. flour (about 2 cups) You could use half regular and half whole grain flours.
2 tsp. baking powder
pinch of salt
10 cl. milk
5 cl. olive oil
1 pear, peeled, cored and diced
5 oz. blue cheese, crumbled
1 tsp. ground cardamom (I used fresh green pods that I crushed with the back of my knife)
1 Tb. dried rosemary
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the eggs, olive oil, and milk and whisk until well combined. Gently fold in the pear, cheese and spices/herbs with a spatula until incorporated.
Pour into muffin tins (use paper molds or grease well), and bake at 350 for 25-20 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clear.
Let cool to room temperature.
Notes: baked as the recipe is written, we both regretted not taking a more pronounced stance: sweet or savory. In the morning, I would not mind a little bit more sugar whereas in the afternoon a little bit more salt would be appreciated. I am just so bad at choosing that I have come up with my own solution: a spat of strawberry jam in the morning and a spat of salted butter in the evening.
These are great for a sunday brunch, dinner party and they are great as mid morning or afternoon snacks. They taste fantastic with a cup of tea.
Anonymous March 15, 2007 um 2:49 am
Oh wow.. this was well worth waiting for!
Anonymous March 15, 2007 um 3:33 am
Helene, what an intriguing combination. Pear and blue cheese is a classic in our house — we use it all the time for risotto. But I have to admit, the addition of rosemary and cardamom is unexpected, so unexpected I have trouble imagining it. I do know, however, that cardamom is one of my favourite flavours. Also, sorry to hear about your blogger woes, but I’m glad to see you stuck with it.
Helene March 15, 2007 um 3:39 am
Rob: in case you don’t see the update: baked as the recipe is written, we both regretted not taking a more pronounced stance: sweet or savory. In the morning, I would not mind a little bit more sugar whereas in the afternoon a little bit more salt would be appreciated. I am just so bad at choosing that I have come up with my own solution: a spat of strawberry jam in the morning and a spat of salted butter in the evening.
Meeta K. Wolff March 15, 2007 um 8:35 am
And you did not let us down with this recipe. I love it. I have not dared to mix both like you have but I am all motivated to do so!!
[email protected] March 15, 2007 um 10:56 am
haha…i just finished putting a comment on your previous incomplete post and clicked publish and this one opened up.Thanks for sharing the recipe.These really look delicious.
Anonymous March 15, 2007 um 11:31 am
I see these, and the first thing that springs to mind is "PERFECT FOR A DINNER PARTY!" (mostly because my family are insanely picky and if I made these I’d end up eating them all by myself)
Now I just need the time to throw a dinner party 🙁
MyKitchenInHalfCups March 15, 2007 um 11:32 am
The unexpected rewards of blogging! So happy for your swift recovery!
I haven’t been able to get pear and blue chesse and cardamom and rosemary out of my mind since I saw these yesterday. I love each of these separately and must try them together but your comment on more one way or the other is interesting.
Dolores March 15, 2007 um 6:49 pm
oh… my… I think I know what *I* will be doing with the luscious pears and fresh rosemary that arrived in this week’s CSA box. Perfect with a glass of merlot!
Cate March 16, 2007 um 2:46 am
The pear and bleu cheese combination sounds heavenly, and I love how easy the recipe looks.
Freya March 16, 2007 um 2:19 pm
I agree, it sounds like a perfect combination and they look yummy!
esther March 16, 2007 um 2:30 pm
Roasted pears sprinkled with cardamom??? (insert sound of wheels turning) I am very intrigued and might have to steal that one from you! Your little cakes are so pretty.
Rasa Malaysia March 16, 2007 um 2:57 pm
All your baked goods look so delicious…wow! Glad to have found you. 🙂
Anonymous March 16, 2007 um 5:25 pm
Hi Helen – I seem to have missed the drama, but I can fully relate… arg…
These look so wonderful! What an intriguing combination of delicious ingredients!
Patricia Scarpin March 16, 2007 um 6:01 pm
These are wonderful, Helene!
Your baking skills always inspire me!
Susan from Food Blogga March 17, 2007 um 1:24 am
Pear and blue cheese are lovely together. I never thought to add the cardamom. Thanks for the inspiration and the beautiful photo.
confituremaison March 27, 2007 um 4:47 am
Je ne peux qu’adorer cette combinaison!
Par ailleurs, ton dernier commentaire, et bien j’y pense encore. Merci , c’est trop gentil!
Suganya May 1, 2007 um 2:40 am
Hay ur cake look YUMMY!…. Blue cheese, cardamom, rosemary and pear… different combination,,
Anonymous May 1, 2007 um 5:42 pm
I rarely copy receipes word by word. Suffice to say this is the case – muffins in the oven 🙂 Thanks 🙂
I added bits of dark chocolate to 4 or 5 muffin tins, we’ll see how it turns out.