Flourless chocolate & pear cake

Flourless chocolate & pear cake

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(56 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 40 mins

Skill level

Moderately easy

Servings

Serves 8

A light, but luscious cake made with hazelnuts - serve a slice for dessert with a dollop of crème fraîche

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Vegetarian
  • Gluten-free
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

kcalories
334
protein
5g
carbs
28g
fat
23g
saturates
9g
fibre
0g
sugar
28g
salt
0.28g

Ingredients

  • 85g butter, plus 1 tbsp extra for tin
  • 85g golden caster sugar, plus extra for tin
  • 85g gluten-free dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 1 tbsp brandy
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 85g hazelnuts, toasted and ground in a food processor
  • 4 very ripe pears, peeled, halved and cored
  • icing sugar, for dusting

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Method

  1. Cut a circle of baking parchment to fit the base of a 25cm loose-bottomed tin. Melt 1 tbsp butter and brush the inside of the tin, then line the base with the parchment and brush again with more butter. Spoon in 2 tbsp caster sugar, swirl it around to coat the base and sides, then tip out any excess.
  2. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl over a pan of hot water, remove from the heat, stir in the brandy and leave to cool. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar in a large bowl until pale and thick; fold into the chocolate with the hazelnuts.
  3. In a separate bowl, with a clean whisk, beat the whites until they reach a soft peak (try not to whisk them too stiffly or you’ll have trouble folding them in). Stir a spoonful of the whites into the chocolate mix, then carefully fold in the rest of them in 2 additions. Spoon into the prepared tin. Level, then arrange the pears over the mixture, cut-side down. Bake for 40 mins until the pears are soft and the cake is cooked all the way through. Leave to cool in the tin slightly before releasing it, then place on a rack to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar and serve with crème fraîche.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, November 2008

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Comments

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boots22's picture
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I made this cake with no problems but I used powdered Almonds. It was for a dinner party, they all loved it. The guests were French and all ate second portions!!!!

michellemykytka's picture
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lovely cake!! Didn't whisk egg whites enough so pears sank but still very nice.

alessandra75's picture
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I made it yeasterday! It has a very good taste, but the texture was quite crumbly!

chrisgalea's picture

Excellent! I tried it out because of coelic guest but everybody wanted a second helping. I used tinned pears and it still worked out well.

inchgall's picture
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I made this last night for a dinner guest who is gluten free. it was so easy and simple to make. The cake is moist and light and went really well with some clotted cream. I would make this again! Highly recommended

karen230674's picture

I have made this receipe with both hazelnuts and almonds. I made it for a friend and she thought it was delicious. It's great to actually find a gluten free cake that looks nice and tastes beautiful. Really moist cake. Great with cream or custard or on it's own ;) x

ilovepuddings's picture

I made this recipe last night without nuts and i doubled the ingredients as i had very large pears and tin. It turned out very well, rose well with a good consistancy looked lovely dusted with icing sugar and i used a dollop of whipped cream instead of creme fraiche, very happy with the result of this recipe.

fritz76's picture

nothing so far ! have to wait until my son goes shopping next time !
we seem to eat the pears more often than not !
the recipe is truly SUPER.

best regards to you all

thank you , fritz76

carrand's picture

Had friends around for a meal and made this cake for dessert, served it warm with creme fraiche.
Easy to make cake and can make in advance and re-warm, great texture, light and chocolatey and absolutely non left.

All our friends asked for recipe. Iwill definately be making this one again.

jessheron's picture
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I made this with ground almonds instead of the hazlenuts and it was amazing! I'll try it with hazlenuts next time. :)

zoegreenall's picture
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Made this for my nephew who is gluten free and was surprised how light it turned out. I was really careful when folding the egg whites but it looked really flat when I took it out of the tin.

I made two smaller ones which probably made it look even less like a cake but it tasted great and looked nice once the icing sugar was added.

Would definately cook again!

srenabp's picture
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Love the delicate mixture of chocolate and hazelnuts! Unfortunately the cake fell into pieces when I wanted to cut a slice, but I enjoyed eating it like that nevertheless.

salvia's picture

Hope this can be made with Pure sunflower spread instead of butter as I have wheat and dairy intolerances. Do like hazlenuts, but do almonds work as well.

donnasimon's picture

Absoute must this cake is so easy and tasty.. served with ice cream you and/or your guests will be very impressed!!

nerysflynn's picture

how do you stop the pears sinking???!!!!! hehe XD

paradisehouse's picture

I haven't made this yet, but thinking about the lovely g/free Lemon Drizzle Cake here (made with mashed potato) I wonder if, for nut allergies, it would work by substituting polenta for the hazelnuts. I use polenta instead of ground almonds in aforementioned Lemon Drizzle and it works very well.

alicemaryevans's picture
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Fab!

chaton's picture
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Sorry forgot to rate this!!

chaton's picture
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I have made this lots of times now and it's yummy!!! I have used whiskey instead of brandy and almonds instead of hazelnuts. Works very well with tinned pears too. I do have a problem with the pears sinking but I'm sure it's because my tin is not the exact size.

mangion's picture

Hi Barney, I would like to try this for Christmas lunch. I would like to prepare it the day before! would it still be nice and moist or would it become too moist? Do you recommend to wrap it in foil for freshness? Many thanks

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