Chocolate-Pear Spice Cake

This cake smells enticingly spicy-sweet as it bakes. The aroma of cloves and nutmeg that fill the house is released with each bite in this Christmas cake.

Chocolate-Pear Spice Cake Enlarge Image
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19 users rated this recipe an average rating of 4.0
Makes:
12 servings
Prep:
40 mins
Cool:
10 mins
Bake:
1 hr 350°
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Chocolate-Pear Spice Cake

Ingredients
2
teaspoons ground cinnamon
1
teaspoon baking powder
1
teaspoon baking soda
1/2
teaspoon salt
1/2
teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8
teaspoon ground cloves
1
cup sugar
3
tablespoons molasses
2
eggs
1 1/2
cups unsweetened applesauce
1
small Bosc pear, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
2
ounces bittersweet and/or milk chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2
cup coarsely chopped walnuts, hazelnuts (filberts), or pecans
 
Whipped cream (optional)
 
Pear Chips (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9-inch springform pan; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cloves.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar, and molasses with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating just until combined after each addition. Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the applesauce, starting and ending with flour mixture. Stir in orange peel.
  4. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Arrange pear slices in a layer on top of the batter. Sprinkle with chopped chocolate and nuts. Bake about 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove sides of pan. Let stand about 45 minutes to serve warm or cool completely. If desired, serve with whipped cream and Pear Chips. Makes 12 servings.

From the Test Kitchen

Prepare, bake, and cool cake. Wrap tightly with foil and store at room temperature for up to 24 hours or freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw frozen cake and serve at room temperature.

Pear Chips

Ingredients

1
small cored Bosc pear

Directions

  1. Using a mandoline, very thinly slice a cored small Bosc pear. Place pear slices on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in a 300 degrees F oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden and crisp, turning once. Store in an airtight container and chill for up to 2 days.
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