I first made this torte for a cooking class on healthy hormone balance because pears are such a fantastic fruit for stabilizing blood sugar-and putting pears and chocolate together just made sense. What I hadn’t expected was how beautiful this dessert would look and how satisfying a small slice can be. One little nibble will promptly make you forget that you’re eating a “healthy” dessert.
- Coconut oil for greasing
- 2 cups almond flour
- ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup agave nectar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups raw cashews
- ½ cup coconut cream
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1 vanilla bean
- ¾ cup water
- 2 pears thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch springform pan with about 1 teaspoon coconut oil.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the agave, eggs, and vanilla. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry mixture until thoroughly combined. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine the cashews, coconut cream, and maple syrup. Use a paring knife to slice the vanilla bean lengthwise down the center. Open the bean to expose the paste-like seeds, use the back of the knife to gently scrape them out of the pod, and add them to the food processor. With the motor running, gradually add the water until the mixture is the consistency of a thick nut butter.
Spread the cashew cream over the cake, pushing it all the way to the sides of the pan. Arrange the pear slices in a circular pattern over the top, then sprinkle with the cinnamon. Remove the springform ring, slice the cake, and serve.