Well. we all had a fantastic time at Wimborne Food Festival at the weekend. Fortunately, the weather was kind, and the event was packed out as ever. It was such a great opportunity to catch up with other interesting and inspiring food writers, particularly Josceline Dimbleby and Lucas Hollweg.
As it was National Baking Week, I just had to demonstrate a cake, and my cake of choice was a very tasty Chocolate & Pear cake using lovely local, seasonal conference pears. I was thrilled to hear that so many people in the audience went home and made this cake straight away, to great success. For those of you who wanted the recipe, it is below. Hope you like it!
Chocolate & Pear Cake
· 85g butter
· 85g dark chocolate
· 85g caster sugar
· 1 tbsp brandy
· 3 eggs, separated
· 85g ground almonds or hazelnuts
· 4 very ripe pears, peeled, halved and cored
1) Grease and line a 25cm springform tin
2) Preheat the oven to 180 / Gas mark 4
3) Melt the chocolate and butter together
4) Stir the brandy and leave to cool
5) Whisk the eggs and sugar in a large bowl until pale and thick.
6) Fold the melted chocolate and hazelnuts into the egg and sugar mixture
7) In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites to soft peak
8) Fold one tablespoon of egg whites into the chocolate mixture, followed by the rest of the mixture in two additions.
9) Gently pour the mixture into the prepared tin
10) Lay the pear halves into the mixture in the tin
11) Bake for around 40 minutes
12) You can dust with icing sugar and serve with crème fraiche