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Pear, Almond and Chocolate Cake

Friday 2 November 2012
We had some pears in the fruit bowl that ripened but didn't soften that much and I did not want good food going to waste.  There was only one thing for it, bake a cake!  We had friends coming over for afternoon tea so I needed a cake that was substantial and tasty but also mildly impressive.  Here's what I came up with:
Pear, Almond and Chocolate Cake

100g ground almonds
140g self-raising flour
175g butter, cut into cubes
140g caster sugar
2 large free range eggs
6 small, ripe Conference pears
75g dark chocolate , chopped into small chunks

Preheat the your oven to 160C.  Grease and line the base of a 20cm springform round cake tin.  Put the ground almonds, flour and butter in a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer.  Rub the butter into the flour and almonds until it looks like breadcrumbs.  Add the sugar and eggs then mix briefly.  Peel, core and dice three of the pears.  Fold the diced pears and chocolate chunks gently into the cake mixture.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top. Peel, core and slice the remaining pears and arrange however you like over the top of the cake. Press the slices of pear down lightly then bake the cake in your preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean.  Cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. We served ours with a little creme fraiche on the side.


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