This recipe is by Frank Camorra of Movida – except I omitted the chocolate (there was 50g of dark chocolate as well), as I thought there was enough flavour to enjoy with the hazelnut and the pear. If you can’t buy blanched hazelnuts, this is how to do it. I blanched mine the day before making the cake to ensure they were nice and dry before grinding. This recipe is a keeper.
100g blanched hazelnuts
140g self-raising flour
175g butter, cut into cubes
140g brown sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
3 semi-ripe packham pears
Icing sugar, for dusting
1. Preheat the oven to 140C for fan-forced (160C conventional). Butter and line the base of a 25 x 11-centimetre loaf cake tin with baking paper
2. Grind the hazelnuts in a food processor until fairly fine. Add the flour and mix briefly. Add the butter and pulse until it forms crumbs
3. Transfer to a bowl, add the sugar and eggs and mix briefly with a wooden spoon (mixture will be quite thick). Peel, core and chop one-and-a-half pears into a small dice and stir the pears into the cake mixture
4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the top. Peel, core and slice the remaining pears and arrange on the top of the cake. Press down lightly and bake for 50-60 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean when inserted in the middle.
5. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn out and cool on a wire rack. Dust with icing sugar. Serve warm or cold