This pie can be made with plums, apricots or peaches.
4 medium pears cut in half lengthwise and cored
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
4 oz. unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. backing powder
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp. rum (optional) or water
Preheat oven to 325 F. Butter 9-inch round pan.
Halve pears lengthwise; remove cores. A melon baller removes cores easily, but a small
spoon works, too. Sprinkle 1 tbsp. sugar and ½ vanillas extract over pears. Heat a large skillet over medium. Place cut side down in skillet. Cook until beginning to brown, 7 to 8 minutes. Turn pears over, add rum (or 2 tbsp. water) and cook for 2-3 minutes.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and baking powder. Set aside
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar with a hand mixer. Mix until thoroughly combined, do not over mix. Add flour and baking powder and mix.
In another bowl, blend eggs with a pinch of salt with a hand mixer until smooth and thick, about 2 minutes. Pour in the egg mixture into cake butter and beat to combine. The batter will be pale yellow and thick. Arrange pears cut-side-down on a baking pan in a decorative circle and top them with cake butter. Use a rubber spatula to spread it evenly.
Bake the cake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes.