gingerbread loaf with poached pears

I have always wanted to make a pear bread. I’m talking whole pears popping out of a beautiful dark loaf. And today, I did it. The wonderful part of this pear gingerbread loaf is how easy it is to make. Simply poach pears in white wine, sugar, and spices, then place them into a delicious gingerbread batter. 

This gingerbread loaf would be perfect for an afternoon tea or a weekend brunch. It has a sophistication that will wow and excite your guests, but a simplicity that won’t leave you slaving for hours in the kitchen.

It’s a total winner.

sprinkling powdered sugar onto gingerbread loaf

How to poach pears

Something tells me you don’t believe me when I say this gingerbread loaf is easy to make. And something else tells me you heard ‘poached pears’ and decided this bread wasn’t for you. But guys, I’m telling you, this recipe is so easy!

To poach the pears, literally all you have to do is peel them and stick them in a pot. Then, throw in some white wine, sugar, water, cinnamon sticks, and cardamom pods. Bring all that to a boil, then turn down the heat and cook for 45 minutes. That’s it! Poached pears are embarrassingly easy to make, but people will think you slaved away at this gingerbread loaf.

The reason you can’t just add the pears straight into the bread is because 1) They’d release a ton of unwanted moisture into the bread and keep it from baking all the way through, and 2) The pears themselves wouldn’t cook all the way. So you’d be left with this awkwardly crunchy pear bread that’s like not even done in most places. Yuck.

So yeah, poach those pears like the kitchen boss you are!

gingerbread loaf

Assembling this pear gingerbread loaf

Once you’ve finished poaching the pears (hoorah!), the rest of this pear bread is a cinch to make. The gingerbread loaf comes together in less than 10 minutes and doesn’t require any special ingredients. Once the batter has been mixed up, pour it into the prepared loaf pan. Then gently place the pears into the batter, making sure they’re almost completely enveloped in it (the batter will rise up over them the rest of the way, don’t worry!).

After you’ve baked this gingerbread loaf, let it relax in the pan for 20 minutes before trying to take it out.

In other news, I touched down in Ann Arbor this afternoon, and am currently in Alex’s study. It’s so nice to be here as the weather is getting colder, and SO nice to be here with my love. Be sure to keep up with my travels on Snapchat: sarahfennell!

Happy weekend to all. MAKE THIS GINGERBREAD LOAF!

Print

Drunken Pear Ginger Bread

Scale

Ingredients

For the poached pears

  • 3 bosc pears, peeled with stems left on
  • 1 bottle (750ml) white wine
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 10 cardamom pods

For the bread

  • 12 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup dark molasses
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, grated (I used a microplane)
  • 2½ cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain non- or low-fat yogurt

Instructions

  1. Heat the pears, white wine, sugar, water, and spices until boiling, then turn heat down to simmer. Continue to cook for 45 minutes, then remove pears from poaching liquid and allow to cool slightly.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Heavily grease a large loaf pan with butter. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the butter, molasses, and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs and vanilla extract, beating for an additional 3 minutes. Stir in fresh grated ginger.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt, whisking to combine. Slowly alternate folding in the flour mixture and the low fat yogurt into the wet ingredients until everything is combined.
  5. Pour the batter into the loaf pan, then place the pears bottom side down in the batter so they are nearly enveloped. Bake for 1 hour, then allow to sit for 20 minutes on a cooling rack before removing from pan!

More ginger desserts from Broma Bakery:

Gingerbread Linzer Cookies with Dulce de Leche Centers

Gingerbread Millionaire Bars

Grain-Free Molasses Ginger Cake

Whole Wheat Ginger Blueberry Crumble Bars

Gingersnap Pumpkin Cheesecake

52 comments

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This looks so lovely Sarah! I love your styling and everything! Yum!!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you as always, Tori!

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Hi,
Can you tell me the measurements of what you say is a large loaf pan ?
9×5 ???? THX – Shelley

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That big pear in the centre is so gorgeous! Love this!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you Katrina!

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This is the most beautiful thing I’ve seen in a long time, but I think some of the instructions got mixed up with another recipe.

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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What a colossal mistake! Thank you for letting me know, Debbie. It is fixed now!

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This is a real stunner……any tricks how to remove it after the 20 minutes…..I’m hoping it comes out real eeeasy!!! Goldie

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Love all the spices in here- cinnamon and cardamom are my fall favorites! Pinning 🙂

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you Medha! Cardamom is my #1 🙂

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What a classy looking gingerbread! This is one of the prettiest gingerbreads I’ve ever seen. And I love the pear in there. Delicious!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you so much Amanda! Classy desserts are the best.

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Sarah, gorgeous bread!!!! and love the fresh ginger!!! I can taste it from here!!! have a great time with Alex!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you Alice! I’ll tell him you say hi 🙂

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Yum! Can’t wait to try! What would you think of using the remaining poaching liquid for some kind of wine spritzer or even pear sangria?

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Karin,
That’s exactly what I did!! I continued to reduce the mixture down until it was only 2 cups. I LOVE the idea of pear sangria, it would be perfect with a dash of bourbon and some more wine 🙂

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Oh wow girlfriend I need this bread in my life now!!!! It is beyond amazing!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you galpal!

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This is a gorgeous loaf of gingery goodness, but adding the poached pears takes it to a whole new level. It is divine, gorgeous and so sophisticated… Gah!! Congrats my dear! Have fun in Ann Arbor, spending time with your Sunshine!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you Traci! Sometimes sophisticated is exactly what I want in a dessert. And thank you for the good wishes!!!

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Gorgeous Sarah! Have fun in Ann Arbor!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you Mary Ann! Hope you have a good time here in a few weeks 🙂

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beautiful idea of bread decoration, I love it so much

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Stunning as always Sarah! Have a great time in Ann Arbor.

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you sweetpea!

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Sarah, this bread looks gorgeous! You’re right – I love the simple elegance of it, and the fact that it’s easy to make is always a bonus. I will definitely have to try this recipe out. I made your dirty chai muffins last week and they were wonderful!! <3

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Oh I’m SO glad you enjoyed them!! That’s great to hear– thank you for making them!!!!!

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This is mind blowingly beautiful!!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you lady!

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Looks gorgeous! So cool! Pinning!

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Gorgeous and very creative!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Thank you, you’re too kind!

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Wow this is gorgeous! Love your photography with the central pears and icing sugar on a dark backdrop – so beautiful, and I can imagine the spicy gingerbread would go so perfectly with tender poached pears <3

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Just wondering if you core the pears before inserting in the batter? Thanks!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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I did not, but you certainly could! If you do, though, core them from the bottom so you still get the full tops 🙂

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Hi Sarah,

Can I turn this recipe into mini loaves rather than 1 big loaf? am making mini loaves as Christmas gift this year and I would like to make this and your White Chocolate & Cranberry loaf.

Please advise.

Thanks,
Jackie

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Hi Jackie!

You absolutely can turn this into mini loaves! I would use 1 pear per loaf. It will completely depend on the size of your mini loaf pans. Just make sure to check for done-ness around 20 minutes of baking 🙂

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The directions only said to use a ‘large’ loaf pan. To me that means a 9 x 5 pan (vs 8 x 4). Well, that was a huge mistake. The batter has totally overflowed the pan and is now dripping all over the bottom of the oven. I’m sure it will still be a great loaf but it’s too much batter for a 9×5 pan.

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Hi Joanna,

Sorry to hear about that. I used a 1.5 pound loaf pan, and had no issues. a 9×5 pan shouldn’t cause any issues either, so I’m wondering if your pears were extra large, sending a lot of volume out of the pan. Hope everything else turned out OK and happy baking!

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How does it hold up once sliced? It looks like maybe the bread could fall off the pears? But gorgeous and I will be making it this fall.

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Looks fantastic (and hopefully in an hour or so I’ll find out if it tastes as good as that batter did) but unfortunately my batter ran over and into my oven. 🙁

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Oh no! You must’ve needed to use a bigger loaf pan, or your pears were super big!

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I made this fantabulous Pear gingerbread + brought it to share with my co-workers. We all give it 10 stars, both for presentation + deliciousness. I’m sooo glad to have stumbled upon the recipe. I will definitely be making it again + again. Thank you Broma Bakery!!!

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Omg thank YOU, Sheila! I’m so, so glad to hear that!

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I made this gluten free using Bella All Purpose Flour and it came out just like the picture and tasted great! Everyone raved about the beauty and taste on Christmas. I think I now have a new Christmas tradition!

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Used this recipe as the base for a cake I made for my Christmas party- my guests are still emailing me about it!!

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is full fat yogurt ok?

Sarah | Broma Bakery
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Hey Hannah! Full fat yogurt will work great too. We just always have nonfat on hand so that’s what I use. You’ll probably find your gingerbread loaf is even moister with the full fat yogurt!

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