Pear and toasted coconut cake with honey and thyme poached pears

If you're a pear lover, you are going to adore this cake. With soft, sweet cubes of pear and a crunchy coconut topping, served with our divine honey and thyme poached pears, it makes for a perfect seasonal dessert.

By Jo Wilcox
  • 25 mins preparation
  • 50 mins cooking
  • Serves 12
  • Print


  • 180 g butter
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 225 g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 medium ripe pears, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup coconut flakes
Poached pears
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2-3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 6 baby pears, peeled and cored, stalks left on
  • Cream, yoghurt or ice cream, to serve


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 170°C. Line the base of a 21cm springform tin with baking paper and lightly grease the sides.
  • 2
    Using electric beaters, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, then beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the vanilla and desiccated coconut, then sift in the flour and baking powder. Gently fold it all together.
  • 3
    Spoon half the cake batter into the lined tin and smooth over, then scatter diced pear on top and spoon over the remaining batter. Sprinkle with coconut flakes and bake for 40-50 minutes or until golden and just set in the centre. Allow to cool.
  • 4
    For poached pears, simmer water, sugar, honey and thyme for 2 minutes, then add peeled pears and poach for 10-12 minutes until just tender. Halve pears and serve with a slice of cake and cream, yoghurt or ice cream.

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