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Published September 14th, 2022
A 'Pear-fectly' delicious dessert, ripe for the season
Chocolate Pear Cake Photos Susie Iventosch

Our Lamorinda Weekly publisher, Andy Scheck, sent me this pear cake recipe and it sounded very intriguing. Made with fresh pears, cocoa powder, chocolate chips, quick oats, blond raisins, and a wee bit of whisky or rum, it is a fun one to try! Andy enjoys cooking, and he loves using seasonal produce, so when pears hit the produce stands, he finally took an opportunity to make this cake. He'd been meaning to try this recipe for years, but had never gotten around to making it until just now. The original recipe comes from a German cooking enthusiast who posted it online many years ago.
We made the cake and thought it was delicious. The only thing we would do differently next time, would be to cut the pears up into bite size pieces and layer them in the middle of the batter, or mix them into the batter, so that the pears are evenly distributed. Using halves makes a nice presentation, but we'd love to have more cake and pears together in each bite. We also added a bit of salt to the ingredients.
We used red crimson pears in our cake, because they were the only ripe ones we could get our hands on at the moment, but if you have time to let the pears ripen, use your favorite pears for this cake. Bosc, D'Anjou, or Bartlett pears are all great for baking. Be sure that the pears are ripe, but firm. You don't want them to be mushy for baking.
If you give this cake a try, we know you will enjoy it! So many delightful flavors together. The oats, even though there is not much in the recipe, give a certain texture and flavor that combines well with the rest of the ingredients!
*Note - I converted this recipe into cups and ounces from the original, which was in metric measurements, ergo the slightly unusual quantities.
2 lbs. pears (about 3 large pears) ripe, but firm
5 1/2 tablespoons butter (5.3 oz.)
3/4 cup sugar (Andy used raw sugar, I used granulated sugar, but I also think brown sugar would be great)
3 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 1/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
5 tablespoons quick oats
2/3 cup dark chocolate chips or shredded chocolate
1 tablespoon golden raisins
1 tablespoon rum or whiskey
Powdered sugar for dusting the top of the cake
Preheat oven to 350 F. (Andy baked this cake at 380 F, but I found 350 worked perfectly in my oven.) Grease or spray an 8-inch square baking dish.
Soak the raisins in in the rum for about 15-20 minutes. Peel and halve the pears and remove the core. Set aside.
Mix all dries (flour, baking powder, salt, cocoa powder, and cinnamon) together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs until incorporated. Add milk and dries alternately, beginning and ending with dries.
Stir in oats, raisins, and chocolate chips and mix well.
Turn about 2/3 of the batter into the prepared baking dish. Arrange pears face down right on top of the batter and gently press down a little bit. Then, cover the pears with the remaining batter. You may not be able to completely cover the pears, but that's okay. Alternatively you can chop the pears into bite-size pieces and spread them evenly over the bottom batter and then cover them with the remaining batter.
Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool. Dust with powdered sugar.

Susie can be reached at suziventosch@gmail.com. This recipe can be found on our website: www.lamorindaweekly.com. If you would like to share your favorite recipe with Susie please contact her by email or call our office at (925) 377-0977. Or visit https://treksandbites.com

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