Pear and chocolate cakes

Makes 8
8 small pears, peeled
125g unsalted butter,
plus extra for greasing
125g plain flour,
plus extra for dusting
250g dark chocolate,
chopped, plus 25g grated
20g cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
¼ tsp sea salt
175g brown sugar
300g double cream
2 x 8-hole muffin tins

Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Grease the holes of one of the muffin tins and dust with flour. In a microwaveable dish, place 200g of the chopped chocolate with the butter and microwave for ½-1 min until the mixture can be stirred smooth. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with the salt and brown sugar until light and creamy. Stir in the melted chocolate until smooth, then fold in the flour mixture. Divide the cake batter between the prepared muffin tin holes and bake for 15–20 mins.

Pear and chocolate cakes Photo Gallery

In the meantime, grease the bottom of the second muffin tin. As soon as the cakes come out of the oven, place the underside of the second muffin tin over the top of the cakes and push it down onto them to create cups. Allow to cool for 5 mins, then remove the top tray carefully and allow the cakes to cool completely. To make the warm chocolate sauce, bring 50g of the double cream to the boil in a small saucepan, then mix in the remaining chopped chocolate, off the heat, until it has completely melted. Place the cakes each on a serving plate, then whip the remaining cream in a bowl for 2-3 mins until stiff and divide between the cakes. Place a pear on top of each, pour over the warm chocolate sauce and sprinkle with the grated chocolate.

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