What do you do with over ripe pears and a somewhat stale and forgotten loaf of bread? Bake a cake of course! Take a tip from an Italian grandmother and make those sad leftovers into something delicious that they call “La Miascia”. This incredibly moist and fruity cake will remind you of bread pudding. It’s a treat served warm for breakfast but it’s really perfect for any time of day.
Gather up stale bread and ripe pears.
Soak the bread in the milk
Add the chopped fruit and remaining ingredients to the bread and pour into pan.
Bake according to directions, let cool slightly and dig in!
11 ounces of plain artisan-style bread (not sourdough)
2 cups whole milk
2 ripe medium pears
4 dried plums or prunes, thinly sliced
3 dried figs, thinly sliced
3 large eggs
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
¼ cup butter, melted, divided
Pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Butter and sugar a 9 inch round cake pan
Break bread into small pieces discard crust. Place in a large bowl and pour the milk over. Set aside for an hour turning the bread in the milk and crushing it with your hands. There should not be any loose milk in the bowl once the bread has broken down, if there is, strain it off and discard.
Peel and core the pears and cut into rough pieces. Slice prunes and figs. Add all the fruit to the bread mixture and combine gently with hands or spoon.
Whisk the eggs, ½ cup of sugar, 3 tablespoons of melted butter, and a pinch of salt. Fold this into the bread and fruit mixture.
Pour it into the prepared pan. Dust the surface with nutmeg, drizzle with remaining butter, and sprinkle with remaining tablespoon of sugar.
Bake 1 ¼ hours. Turn the heat up to 375 degrees and bake about 10-15 minute more until slightly brown and cake pulls away from the sides of the pan.
From: Cooking With Italian Grandmothers by Jessica Theroux