Pear Upside Down Chocolate Cake Recipe
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The pears not only provide a flavorful complement to the chocolate, but they also provide moistness to this cake, as well as a decorative touch.
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4 pears Anjou or Bosc - peeled, halved lengthwise and cored
1/4 cup currants or golden raisins
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar - packed
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/3 cup milk
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup pecans - roasted and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
4 tablespoons unsalted butter - softened
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder plus additional for garnish
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs - large
:9 inch cake pan, mixer, saucepan, sautÃƒÂ© pan, medium bowl
For the pears, lightly butter a nine-inch cake pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper and grease the paper.
heat the butter in a medium saute pan.
Add the brown sugar, zest and lemon juice.
Stir until the butter is melted and all ingredients are combined.
Add the pears, lower the heat to medium low and cover.
Simmer, turning once until the pears are soft and juicy.
Remove them from the heat.
Place 6 of the pear halves, stems towards the center with the rounded sides down, in the prepared pan.
Chop the remaining pears and place them back into the sauce along with the currants.
Heat for 2-3 minutes, then place half of the mixture in the center of the pears in the cake pan. Set the rest aside for later.
For the cake, preheat the oven to 350°F.
Scald the milk in a saucepan, keep warm.
Whisk the flour, pecans, soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and allspice in a medium bowl.
Beat the butter with an electric mixer until smooth. Increase the speed to medium high and add the sugar. Continue beating until light and fluffy.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Add the cocoa powder and vanilla and beat for one more minute.
On medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addtion.
Turn mixer to low and add the flour mixture a little at a time.
When all the flour in incorporated, remove the bowl and fold in the hot milk with a rubber spatula.
Gently spread the batter over the pears in the cake pan, trying not to move them.
Tap the pan lightly on the counter to settle the batter.
Bake until a toothpick in the center comes out clean, approximately 40-50 minutes.
Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for 20 minutes; then invert the cake onto a cake platter.
Cool slightly then carefully peel off the parchment paper.
Allow the cake to cool completely.
To finish the cake, you can dust with cocoa powder or powdered sugar. Pour the reserved pear and currant sauce over the cake and serve each piece with a dollop of whipped cream or non-dairy whipped topping.
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