Flourless chocolate & pear cake

Flourless chocolate & pear cake

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(56 ratings)

By

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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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jomiftab's picture

hi, is there anything i could use to substitute the brandy pls? perhaps orange juice? tnx. jojo

lauraksmithers's picture

Hi,

I want to make this as a birthday cake. Would it be possible to leave off the pears and decorate with chocolate cream and icing etc. I saw Lina's comment and was going to try that! Do you think it would works?

Laura

mmmmmmmmmmlekker's picture
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I made this in small ramequins and they turned out great!!
It's one of my favorite desserts and so easy to make and so light and incredibly tasty!! A big time favourite in my house!

misslinaoh's picture
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Superb cake, an absolute staple in my collection of receipies. Also works really well if you leave out the pears (I adjust the quantaties by an extra 1/3) and make up some rasberry coulis to drizzle over...

sieske's picture
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I tried this recipe and it was really yummy!! I made little ones instead of one big one and everyone liked it very much. I'll make this one for a friend as a thank you-gift.

hayfaa's picture
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very nice indeed! :-) a magic cake without flour!

sieske's picture
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I loved this! I made four little ones instead of one big cake and it worked beautifully. But I have to admit I ate all of them (they were so good and yummy and lovely and ..and..), not at once ofcourse, and I made new ones for dessert.

drbeccles's picture
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re: sinking pears - I forgot to put the pears on and added them 10 mins after the cake mix had gone in the oven. No danger of them sinking if you add them a little after?

drbeccles's picture
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I made this yesterday and it was fantastic - I used a few more grams of chocolate than the recipe suggested, used hazelnuts and it was very moist, rich tasting and great. A different texture to your average sponge cakes and definitely will be making this again. I'm thinking of alternative toppings (the pears were delicious too) but thinking raspberries and choc fudge sauce for a really indulgent day.
Thank you for this recipe it's brilliant.

stefania's picture

An absolute winner! chocolately and moist, however the pears sunk and i lost the whole effect.

ashstar115's picture
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i really liked this recipe, infact i think it fantastic! i used almonds instead of hazulnuts and it worked purfectly. thanks barney!!!

dolsi1's picture

I should add that I cut the pear on 8 pieces. And eat cake with ice-cream.

dolsi1's picture

I liked this cake very much! It is very chocolate and gentle, so for me this is very good, because I like the chocolate much.

buell8abe's picture
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It's a stormer, barney! Fun and easy to make, beautifully light and delicious every time. Perfect with tea, or as a light chocolate treat after dinner. Will be making this one again for sure. Many thanks for a fab recipe!

janbomyers's picture
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Delicious! Made with almonds instead of hazelnuts, and apples instead of pears. Great for gluten free friends.

grainger's picture

I made this for dessert for a dinner party, and everyone commented how chocolatey, moist and delicious the cake was. I didn't have hazelnuts, so substituted them for almonds and served with mixed autumn berries and fresh cream. This will definitely be on our chalets' menu.

linkevica's picture
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lovely cake. perfect for girl night.

anniejansen's picture
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Delicious and beautiful! I swapped the hazelnuts for almonds, and it worked perfect.

littlemisshappy145's picture
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My first ever recipe of good food to go wrong :(
It was very dry and the pears sunk, i used good quality chocolate but it was not as chocolatey as i had hoped. Wondering whether i should have another attmept as everyone else seems to really rate it!

yankee's picture
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Brilliant result!! My son has a wheat allergy and it is difficult sometimes to give him a treat, this really hits the spot!

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