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Pear Spice Cake with Brown Butter Frosting & Dark Chocolate Drip

An autumnal pear cake, flavoured with cardamom & cinnamon, topped with a brown butter frosting, and drizzled with dark chocolate.
Servings: 8 slices
Author: Passionate Baker


for the cake:

  • 225 g plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 200 g granulated sugar
  • 130 g salted butter, melted & cooled
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 75 ml creme fraiche
  • 185 g pears, peeled, grated, and drained (about 4 conference pears firmly packed into a 1-cup measure)

for the frosting:

  • 225 g salted butter
  • 90 g icing sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp double cream

for the chocolate drip:

  • 4.5 tbsp double cream
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 35 g dark chocolate, chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 175°C; grease & flour two 6-inch cake tins & set aside.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, cardamom & the sugar. Whisk to combine, then set aside.
  • In a smaller bowl, whisk together the cooled melted butter, the egg + egg yolk, & the creme fraiche.
  • Using a spatula, add the wet ingredients to the dry & fold together until just combined. Add the grated pear into the bowl & stir evenly throughout.
  • Evenly divide the batter between the cake tins & bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  • Leave the cakes to cool for 10 minutes in the tins, before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Next, make the frosting. Place the butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat & let it melt completely. Continue to cook the butter, swirling the pot frequently (but not stirring), until the milk solids turn light golden brown & it smells nutty, about 5-8 minutes. As soon as it’s ready, pour the butter into a small bowl (scraping all of the browned bits in too!) & leave to chill in the fridge until almost solidified, about 30-40 minutes.
  • Transfer the cooled butter to a large mixing bowl & beat until light + fluffy, about 3 minutes. Sift in the icing sugar + cardamom and beat until it’s completely smooth. Beat in the cream until the frosting is fluffy & luscious.
  • When the cakes at cooled, cut each in half using a sharp serrated knife to give you four layers. Place the first layer on a cake stand & spread frosting evenly across it. Repeat with the remaining layers. Spread the remaining frosting all over the cake & keep in the fridge while you make the glaze.
  • Now, make the glaze. In a small saucepan placed over a medium heat, whisk together the cream, butter & the cocoa powder. When combined/melted/smooth, remove the pan from the heat & stir in the chopped chocolate; whisk until silky smooth.
  • Leave the glaze to cool ever so slightly – it shouldn’t be warm, but it should still be melty enough to pour. Slowly pour the glaze over the cake & use an offset spatula to spread it out/run down the sides of the cake.
  • Serve with a big dollop of whipped cream. Enjoy!