I must admit I always choose creamy desserts over cakes, as I find it harder to finish a slice of thick cake than a few spoonfuls of cream. Anyhow, this cake is one of the few exceptions. I guess the fact that it is flourless has a lot to do with it. This is a gluten free cake and the almond meal makes for a fuller yet lighter texture than any “normal” cake I have baked in the past. Also, I find it impossible to resist anything made with dark chocolate and I think that chocolate and pears are the best combination EVER, so this cake had my full attention from the first time I saw it. Actually, I have seen a few versions online, but, as always, I made a few changes to the original recipe. I added Kahlua and substituted hazelnut meal for almond meal as I had a full bag of the latter in my pantry. I was really happy with the result and so were my kids, who devoured it (pears included) in the blink of an eye! Enjoy it plain or with some crème fraîche.
- 85 gms – 3 oz. butter + 1 tbsp to grease the tin
- 85 gms – 3 oz. caster sugar + 1 tbsp to coat the tin
- 85 gms dark chocolate, broken into pieces
- 1 tbsp Kahlua
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 eggs, separated
- 85 gms – 3 oz. almond meal
- 3 very ripe pears, peeled, cored and quartered
- Icing sugar, for dusting
- Cut a circle of baking paper to fit the base of your spring form pan. Brush the inside of the pan with 1 tbsp of melted butter, then line the base with the baking paper and brush it with more butter. Add 1 tbsp of caster sugar, swirl it around to coat the pan everywhere and remove any excess.
- Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler. When ready, remove it from the heat, add the Kahlua and keep it aside to cool down.
- Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form and keep them aside.
- Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until pale. Add the melted chocolate and almond meal and mix until well combined.
- Add the egg whites little by little and gently incorporate them to the mixture.
- Pour the mixture in the pan and level it. Arrange the pears over the mixture, cut side down.
- Bake in a pre heated oven at 180°C – 355°F for about 40 minutes or until the pears are soft and the cake is cooked through.
- Let it cool down before unmoulding it. When completely cool, dust it with icing sugar.