Cakes, Tarts/ Other Desserts

Chocolate Cake with Poached Pears in Red Wine and Happy Birthday to Everyone Who Was Born in the Month of July!

I had a desire today to bake something special, not only for my Birthday but for everyone who is celebrating Birthday in July. This is an easily prepared dessert with a sophisticated taste. Warm poached pears coated in a rich red wine sauce on a top of chocolate heaven – who could resist?

Happy Birthday, Dear Friends, I wish you all very sweet year!

Adapted from Gâteau «Reine de Saba» by Pierre Hermé

Chocolate Cake with Poached Pears in Red Wine

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Ingredients

  • For the cake:
  • 5 oz dark chocolate with 60% cocoa, chopped into very small pieces
  • 4 Tbsp. butter, room temperature plus more for greasing
  • 3 eggs, separate
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1/3 cup potato starch
  • 2/3 cup almond flour
  • For the poached pears:
  • 4-6 pears, peeled and cored
  • 2 cup red wine, recommend Shiraz or Merlot
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 anise star
  • lemon zest from 1 lemon

Instructions

1

To make poached pears: Combine wine, honey, sugar lemon zest, cinnamon stick, and anise star, and bring to a boil. When the wine mixture is boiling, turn heat down to a simmer and add the pears. Simmer pears for 25-30 minutes until they are tender and are easily poked through with a fork. Remove pears and let them cool. Boil wine sauce until the liquid has been reduced by half.

2

To make a cake: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Butter an 9-inch pan with 2-inch sides.

3

Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set over but not touching barely simmering water in a saucepan. Heat, stirring, until the chocolate melts, about 2 minutes. Add the butter and continue to stir until the butter melts and is incorporated. Let it cool.

4

In a bowl, sift together the almond flour and potato starch. Set aside.

5

In a large bowl, combine the egg yolks and sugar. Using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat until creamy, 3 to 4 minutes. Fold in the starch mixture and then the chocolate mixture until blended.

6

In a clean grease-free bowl, using an electric mixer beat the egg whites slowly until they are frothy. Increase the speed, and continue beating until the whites are stiff and glossy. Stir one-fourth of the whites into the batter, then fold in the remaining whites just until incorporated.

7

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and level the top. Bake until the top is risen and crusty and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out almost clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

8

To serve, top the cake with the poached pears and red wine sauce.

Poached pears in red wine and chocolate cake.

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Nami | Just One Cookbook
    July 11, 2012 at 5:12 am

    I've had poached pears at a restaurant but never attempted to make one at home. I always admire how lovely they look. The wine makes the pear mysterious yet beautiful rich color…lovely photos as always Yelena!

  • Reply
    Yelena
    July 11, 2012 at 5:17 am

    Thank you Nami! It is very simple to make, if you have any question, please, I am here-)) You can add any spices you like!

  • Reply
    Medeja
    July 11, 2012 at 5:56 am

    Oh thank you so the part of this cake is for me too! Awesome cake and the pears look just divine!

  • Reply
    Helene
    July 11, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    Stunning pictures! Like that you put poached pears on top of the cake.

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    July 14, 2012 at 12:41 am

    Beautiful photos and what an elegant, stunning cake!! I only wish I was born in July. Lol. I'm a June baby.
    Wonderful post!

  • Reply
    MyFudo™
    July 16, 2012 at 1:54 am

    This is such a delightful treat to have to celebrate a wonderful year that went by and the next one to come. You never fail to impress us with your unique features and amazing photos.
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