Dorset pear, berry and almond cake
For the syrup
* 5 tbsp caster sugar,
* 300 ml water,
* 1 tbsp brandy,
For the cake
* 3 pears, peeled, cored and chopped
* 225 g self-raising flour,
* 110 g butter,
* 1 orange, zest only
* 2 large eggs, beaten
* 110 g caster sugar,
* 25 g almonds,
* 1 tbsp demerara sugar,
* 300 g blackberries,
1. Preheat oven to 180C/gas 4.
2. To make the syrup, heat all the ingredients gently in a saucepan until the sugar is completely dissolved.
3. Add the chopped pears to the sugar syrup in a frying pan and bring to the boil. Boil gently for 5 minutes, remove the pears with a slotted spoon and leave to cool. Reserve the syrup.
4. In a mixing bowl, rub the flour and butter together with your fingers until you get a fine breadcrumb consistency. Add the cooled pears, blackberries and orange zest. Stir in the beaten eggs, caster sugar and ground almonds and mix together to form a batter.
5. Pour into a greased and lined cake tin and place in the oven for 35 minutes.
6. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with the demerara sugar and return to the oven for another 5 minutes. Remove, turn out onto a cooling rack and leave to cool.