Serves 12


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus more for the pan

  • 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan

  • 1 cup dark brown sugar

    WNK-Diner: Day for Night book cover Diner: Day for Night Andrew Tarlow
  • 2 eggs

  • 2 cups molasses

  • 2 tablespoons ground ginger

  • 2 teaspoons baking soda

  • 2 teaspoons ground cloves

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ cup minced candied ginger

  • 1 cup boiling water


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 pears, cored, seeded, and cut into quarters or sixths

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • Whipped cream, for serving


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a Bundt or loaf pan.

In the bowl of a stand mixer set with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl, cream the butter and the sugar on medium speed until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the molasses in a steady stream, mixing to combine.

In a separate large bowl, sift the flour, ground ginger, baking soda, ground cloves, and salt. Stir in the candied ginger. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients until just mixed. Add the boiling water a little at a time and mix well.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

To prepare the pears, melt the butter in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the pears and sugar to the pan, tossing until the pears are soft and caramelized.

Serve the cake with the Brown Butter Pears and plenty of whipped cream

“Reprinted with permission from Diner: Day for Night by Andrew Tarlow, copyright © 2023. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House”

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