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Chocolate Cake

Ingredients

  • 675g dark chocolate, in small pieces (try to use 70% cocoa Swiss organic dark chocolate)
  • 450g unsalted butter, soft
  • 675g castor sugar
  • 10 eggs (try to use medium size fresh organic eggs)
  • poached pears
  • 4 beurre bosc pears, peeled, cored and halved
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken
  • 100g brown sugar
  • crème fraiche, to serve
  • extra cocoa for dusting
  • 1/2 teaspoon black salt to garnish crème fraiche
  • sprigs of fresh mint to garnish

Method

1. Pre heat your oven to very low (120°C).

2. To prepare the poached pears, place pear halves into a small casserole dish. Add cinnamon, sugar and enough water to cover pears. Cover with foil and cook for about 4 hours or until very tender. You may need to add a little extra water during cooking so pears do not burn. Check every hour. Remove pears. Cool. Refrigerate, covered, until required.

3. To prepare the cake, preheat oven to 160°C.

4. Melt chocolate and butter over double boiler

5. Whilst melting chocolate, beat together eggs and sugar for at least 5 minutes until pale and creamy

6. Once the chocolate mixture has cooled for a few minutes, gently fold this into the egg and sugar mixture

7. Line a 27cm spring form tin with butter and baking paper. Have a seperate circular sheet of baking paper for the base

8. Bake in the oven for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and place a knife into the centre of the cake. It should come out moist but not very liquid

9. Allow the cake to cool before placing in the fridge. Ideally overnight or for 12 hours.

To serve, remove side of cake pan. Generously cut the cake into slices and place onto plates. Spoon over a generous amount of creme fraiche and garnish with black salt. Place a pear half on each plate. Dust a little cocoa onto the plate and garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.

Notes

1. The beurre bosc pear is in season from March to November, and is a medium to large pear. Sweet and juicy, it’s one of the best all-rounders for cooking.

2. It is important to cool the chocolate mixture before mixing with the eggs and sugar. If it is too hot, you will end up with scrambled eggs.

3. If black salt is unavailable, try garnishing the crème fraiche with a little grated chocolate.

4. Cooking in a waterbath protects the cake or dessert from the direct heat of the oven, helping to ensure a moist result.

5. This kind of rich chocolate mousse cake would also be delicious served with canned black cherries or a quick espresso sauce.

March 8, 2010 - Posted by | Dessert

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