8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), separated
1 cup sugar, separated
3 medium pears, skins on, cored and cut into wedges
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves
¾ cups cornmeal
¾ cups flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves, chopped fine
1½ teaspoons coarse salt
3 large eggs
½ teaspoon teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup heavy cream
Preheat oven to 350ËšF.
Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a cast iron skillet over medium heat, making sure to coat all sides. Add ½ cup of sugar and cook until the butter starts to melt and turn golden brown about 3 minutes. Add pear wedges forming a circle covering entire bottom of pan filling any blank spots. Sprinkle rosemary leaves on the pears. Place in the oven for 15 minutes or until pears are tender. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl combine cornmeal, flour, baking powder and soda, rosemary leaves and salt. Separately, in the bowl of a large mixer over medium-high speed, beat 4 tablespoons butter and ½ cup sugar until fluffy. Reduce speed to medium and add eggs one at a time, making sure to scrape sides of the bowl. Next, adding dry ingredients and mix just until incorporated. Finish by adding vanilla and heavy cream. Drop spoonfuls of batter over pear mixture and spread evenly with a spatula coating evenly and making sure pears are not visible. Bake until golden brown and a tester comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes.
Let stand for 10 minutes, run a knife or spatula around the cakes edges and invert onto a large cutting board tap the bottom if need be. Cool and serve.