Flourless chocolate & pear cake

Flourless chocolate & pear cake

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(66 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 40 mins

More effort

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

  • Vegetarian
  • Gluten-free

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal334
  • fat23g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs28g
  • sugars28g
  • fibre0g
  • protein5g
  • salt0.28g
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Ingredients

  • 85g butter, plus 1 tbsp extra for tin
    Butter

    Butter

    butt-err

    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 85g golden caster sugar, plus extra for tin
  • 85g gluten-free dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 1 tbsp brandy
    Brandy

    Brandy

    bran-dee

    Brandy is a distilled spirit made from virtually any fermented fruit or starchy vegetable.…

  • 3 eggs, separated
    Eggs

    Egg

    egg

    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 85g hazelnut, toasted and ground in a food processor
    Hazelnuts

    Hazelnut

    hay-zl-nut

    Grown in Europe and the US, hazelnuts are encased in a smooth, hard brown shell but are most…

  • 4 very ripe pears, peeled, halved and cored
    Pear

    Pear

    pair

    Like apples, to which they are related, pears come in thousands of varieties, of which only a…

  • icing sugar, for dusting

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.

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Comments, questions and tips

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maitken
6th May, 2012
5.05
This is a delicious cake, very light for a flour less chocolate. I didnt add pears and honestly didn't miss them. I plan to make many more with this recipe
maitken
26th Mar, 2012
5.05
I made this without the pears as I didn’t have any. It was absolutely delicious, much lighter than other flourless chocolate cakes I’ve made and way more moist. It is a winner as we are now gluten free in our house, but, thankfully, not chocolate-free!
estie83
1st Mar, 2012
I have just made this cake, in fact its still in the oven at the moment but its looks amazing! I was a bit nervous about it not rising, having read other comments but it has probably doubled in volume! As long as you are careful with folding the egg whites in, I can't imagine how it could go wrong. I used two loaf tins, sprinkled raspberries over instead of the pear and ommited the brandy. Can't wait to taste it!
estie83
1st Mar, 2012
I have just made this cake, in fact its still in the oven at the moment but its looks amazing! I was a bit nervous about it not rising, having read other comments but it has probably doubled in volume! As long as you are careful with folding the egg whites in, I can't imagine how it could go wrong. I used two loaf tins, sprinkled raspberries over instead of the pear and ommited the brandy. Can't wait to taste it!
Prettydelicious
4th Feb, 2012
5.05
Made this recipe with almonds instead of hazelnuts and also added a little salt. Also used tinned pears as it's difficult to get good pears at the moment. A winner in my house!
cakegirl20
4th Feb, 2012
5.05
A lovely moist, light and tasty cake! I crushed the hazelnuts (couldn't find ground) so there was some texture in the final product which actually worked really well. I also added the pears 10 minutes in to avoid sinking with no ill-effects. Serving with creme fraiche worked wonderfully. Yes, the cake wasn't that deep, but this is to be expected for a flourless recipe. The taste and texture was excellent and I shall definitely be making this again.
sassyl
19th Dec, 2011
5.05
cake heaven!
kimsimm
28th Nov, 2011
5.05
Wow - this is absolutely delicious. I made it with ground almonds and it was superb. I'm sadly wheat intolerant and this was the perfect dessert for me plus everyone else loved it too. I am now searching for other recipes that are wheat free and as delicious.
gray1965
23rd Oct, 2011
4.05
A great dessert. I used Pecans and vanilla extract in place of hazelnut and brandy and it turned out beautifully
cooking4grandma
20th Oct, 2011
5.05
I used tinned pears and added them after cake had been in oven for 10 mins - worked perfectly. Really moist & chocolatey!! I liked the flavour the toasted hazelnuts gave.

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