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Gluten-Free Mud Cake Cups with Pear

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Level: Intermediate

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This is the recipe you wanna make when you have something to prove. Not only is it vegan and gluten-free, and the cups are edible, it even has a gooey chocolate sauce centre. It does take some time to whip up but it’s pretty easy. You can even make it without the chocolate cups and just make the mud cake and poached pear. So get cracking! This is a fun one. (This was featured in the December issue of The Australian Vegan Mag.)

Ingredients

  • FOR THE POACHED PEARS:
  • 9  Small Ripe Pears, Peeled With Steams Attached

  • 1 liter Ginger Beer
  • 1 Tablespoon Crushed Cardamon Pods

  • 60 grams Grated Ginger
  • 4 sticks Cinnamon Sticks
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Bean Paste

  • 1  Lemon, Cut In Half
  • FOR THE CAKE:
  • 60 grams Vegetable Shortening 

  • 1 Tablespoon Instant Coffee
  • ½ cups Cocoa Powder
  • ½ Tablespoons Molasses
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Bean Paste
  • 1 cup Soy Milk Mixed With 1 Tablespoon White Vinegar

  • ½ cups Buckwheat Flour

  • ¼ cups Walnut Meal (You Can Make This In The Food Processor)
  • ½ cups Sugar
  • ½ teaspoons Baking Powder
  • ¼ teaspoons Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon

  • ⅓ cups Boiling Water
  • FOR THE CHOCOLATE SAUCE FILLING:
  • 60 grams Melted Dark Chocolate
  • ½ cups Thick Coconut Cream

  • ½ teaspoons Vanilla Bean Paste
  • 1 pinch Sea Salt
  • FOR THE CHOCOLATE CUPS:
  • 375 grams Good Quality, Dark Chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon Lemon Essence
  • Vegan Gold Dust

Preparation

For the poached pears:
Place all ingredients in a large pot and bring to boil on the stove. Turn heat down to a simmer and cook for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Keep on eye on the pears and gently turn them over once the liquid level is low. Once pears are soft, remove and set aside.

Turn up heat slightly and allow remaining liquid to bubble and become a runny, toffee-like liquid. Remove from heat and coat pears in liquid. Drain and set aside.

For the cake:
Preheat conventional oven 165°C (329ºF). Grease small muffin tin with 9-12 holes.

Melt shortening in small pot on stove, then take off heat. In a blender, add shortening, coffee, cocoa, molasses, vanilla, and milk mixed with vinegar. Blend on low speed until completely combined and smooth.

In bowl of stand mixer with a paddle attachment, sieve flour, walnut meal, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and stir until evenly mixed. Add liquid from blender and mix on very low speed until combined.

Slowly trickle in boiling water along the side of the bowl while still mixing on very low speed. Once water is mixed, scrape down the sides and mix again on low for a few seconds.

Pour into muffin cups, filling only halfway. Bake 20–25 minutes. Check with a toothpick through the centre; if it comes out almost clean, it’s ready. Be careful not to over-bake—even if you slightly under-bake it, it’s better for gluten-free baking.

Cool in tin for 20 minutes, then flip on cake rake and let cool completely.

For the chocolate sauce filling:
Melt chocolate—don’t heat above 32ºC (89ºF). Pour coconut cream into a bowl and then pour chocolate and vanilla into cream and stir until combined. Add salt to taste and set aside.

For the chocolate cups (optional):
Use a chocolate ball mould 30x18cm, and a small circle mould for the base, approximately 4.5 cm wide. Large button moulds are great for this.

Temper chocolate and pour into 9 moulds, saving a small amount of chocolate for later. Let set. Once set, remove from mould by gently tapping on bench.

Melt a tiny bit of chocolate and glue the half balls to the buttons to create a cup. Mix a tiny amount of gold dust with a tiny amount of lemon essence until the consistency of paint. Brush cups with paint and set aside.

To assemble:
Trim the lids off the top of the cakes and set aside. Cut them in one clean piece and reserve the tops.

Carve a small amount of cake out of the middle of the bottom pieces to create a well. Pour a small amount of sauce into the bottom of the cups. Press cake into cups to make sure they fit and trim if needed.

Pour sauce into the well and then cover with the lids. Very gently push down into cups as far as they will go. Place a pear on top of each cup and serve.

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