½cupcoconut oilmelted + a little more for greasing the pan
3cupswhole wheat pastry flourwhite whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour
1 ½teaspoonsbaking soda
1teaspoonfreshly ground nutmeg
1 ½cupswarm water
1 ½cupsdark brown sugar
2tablespoonsapple cider vinegar
3medium pearspeeled and diced ½-inch (about 3 cups diced)
¼cuppowdered sugar for dusting the topif desired
For the Caramel Sauce:
1cupfull-fat coconut milk
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease bundt pan with a little coconut oil - 1 or 2 teaspoons - and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, nutmeg and cloves.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, water, brown sugar, molasses, vinegar and vanilla.
Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Use a whisk to mix the batter together just until combined. The batter will be rather loose and wet. Fold in the pears.
Pour batter into the bundt pan and bake until the cake begins to pull away from the edges slightly and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out nearly dry, 45 to 60 minutes.
Let cool for 5 minutes then use a knife to carefully loosen any stuck sides. Invert cake over a wire rack and lift off the pan. Let cake cool completely.
Carefully transfer cooled cake to platter or cake plate and dust with powdered sugar, if desired.
While the cake cools, make the caramel sauce. In a small bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, vanilla and salt. Set aside.
Add the sugar and water to a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir just to combine, but do not stir after that! Allow mixture to come to a boil and watch it carefully. After about 6 minutes, the mixture will start to turn golden, then light brown, and it will smell like caramel. As soon as it has turned brown, slowly pour in the coconut milk mixture. The caramel will bubble enthusiastically at first. If the sugar hardens around the whisk, don't worry, this is normal - just keep stirring and it will dissolve. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the caramel sauce has thickened, about 5 minutes.
Slice cake and put on plates. Drizzle individual servings with the caramel sauce. Serve.
The caramel sauce may be made ahead of time and kept refrigerated in an airtight container. It keeps well for up to 5 days. Allow the sauce to come to room temperature to thin out a bit before serving. You can also warm it in the microwave for a few seconds to speed up the process.