Chai-Spiced Pecan Torte with Roasted Pears – a subtly sweet, chai-spiced flourless cake using pecans as the base. A beautiful fall dessert, perfect for holiday gatherings, brunch or afternoon tea.
Let yourself float in the beauty of your own heart into the ocean of love that fills all space, that always is….that only is. ~Krishna Das
Pecan Torte with Roasted Pears completely radiates fall. So homey and comforting yet totally elegant. It could be a lovely addition to your holiday table. And really, it is easy enough for an everyday cake.
That sounds good to me… let’s have cake every day 😉 The ingredient list here is not too exotic and it’s grain-free so can satisfy many diets.
Start with separating the eggs so that they come up to room temp while you gather the other ingredients and supplies.
Cold eggs separate more easily and room temp whites whip better.
Prepare the spring-form pan with parchment and oil.
Preheat the oven.
Measure out chai spices and mix together in a bowl, reserving one teaspoon for roasting the pears later on.
Make the flour-less Pecan Torte Batter.
Pulse raw pecans in food processor into a coarse meal.
You can substitute hazelnuts here or almonds. But stick to nut meal, not nut flour. Nut flour is too dense.
Whisk together eggs, sugar and molasses.
Beat vigorously until it becomes smooth and emulsified.
Whip the egg whites.
I don’t know about you, but I can be a bit intimidated by the separating of yolks and whites and folding in the whites, without deflating the batter.
It can be a moment of stress in the kitchen which is not what we are going for here! So I encourage you to a.) breathe deeply throughout the process. b.) know that this cake is so yummy it is worth it. And c.) it’s actually not very difficult after all.
With a few tips, you’ll have it down pat in no time. The torte goes together very easily once you have all your processes done.
Tips for whipping egg whites:
- Make sure there are zero yolks in the whites
- Start with an impeccably clean bowl. (Wipe the bowl out with a bit of vinegar on a cloth, to ensure clean up of any oil residue.)
- Start whipping whites on medium-low speed. This helps form smaller air bubbles giving them structure and stability and they will be less likely to deflate while incorporating into the batter
- When they start to get frothy turn the mixer to high.
- Be careful not to over whip. You may need to turn the mixer off to check for consistency a few times.
Incorporate the whites into the batter a little at a time.
Gently pour into the springform pan and bake.
Let the pecan torte cool before releasing it from the pan. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if you like!
While the Pecan Torte is baking, prep the pears.
Slice and core pears, I don’t bother peeling. They tend to hold their shape better unpeeled.
Sprinkle with sugar, spices and butter.
Roast the pears in a hot oven for 15 minutes.
Top the torte with the warm roasted pears. Add toasted pecans if you like.
You may also like:
- Authentic Masala Chai Recipe!
- Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies
- Rustic Pear Galette with Walnut Crust
- Baked French Toast with Caramelized Pears and Hazelnuts
- Easy Flourless Chocolate Torte
We hope you enjoy making this Chai-Spiced Pecan Torte this weekend and let us what you think in the comments below.
Chai-Spiced Pecan Torte with roasted pears – a subtly sweet, chai spiced flourless cake using pecans as the base. Perfect for holiday gatherings, brunch or afternoon tea.
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 cups raw pecans (340 grams) or sub almond meal (see notes), or ground hazelnuts.
- 4 eggs, separated
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- 1 teaspoon molasses (or sub brown sugar for the white sugar and leave this out)
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- 2 pears
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon chai spice
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper on the bottom. Oil the paper and sides of the pan.
- Make the chai spice mix. Mix cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, allspice, clove and black pepper in a bowl. Set aside 1 teaspoon of mix to use on pears later.
- Pulse raw pecans, chai spice mix and salt in a food processor until nuts are fine, being cautious to not turn them into butter. They should be the texture of coarse sand.
- In a shallow bowl beat the separated egg yolks with the sugar and molasses until the mixture becomes emulsified and lighter in color.
- Add the pecans and mix to combine. The mixture will be quite thick.
- Whip the egg whites to soft peaks.
- Place 1/3 of the whipped egg whites in the center of the pecan mixture. Using a rubber spatula or large metal spoon slice down the middle through the egg whites gently folding the whites and pecan meal towards the center, give the bowl about an 1/8 of a turn toward you and repeat the process, slice down the middle and gently fold 2 or 3 times per turn. Once you make it around the entire bowl, slicing, turning and folding, scrape down the sides of the bowl and gently fold that in. Then add ½ of the egg white mixture remaining and repeat the slicing, folding, turning process and then add the remaining whites and repeat process giving a few extra turns if needed to fully incorporate batter.
- Pour into the parchment-lined springform pan.
- Bake @ 350 in a preheated oven 25-30 minutes, or until cake is firm to the touch in the center.
Roasted Pears ( 450F oven)
- Core and slice pears (peel if desired).
- Place on a sheet pan with parchment.
- Cut butter into a few slices and disperse evenly.
- Sprinkle spices and sugar on top.
- Roast in a preheated oven at 450 degrees for 15 minutes or until tender.
- Using raw pecans is important as roasted nuts release more oil and can turn the nuts to nut butter while grinding in the processor.
- Almond Meal is ground almonds, not almond flour.
- For a speedy way to bring eggs to room temperature, separate your refrigerated eggs and then leave them out about 20-30 minutes while you gather the remaining ingredients. They will warm up faster this way then if just left on the counter in the shell.
- For an even lighter and richer batter you can increase the eggs to 6.
- Serving Size: With the roasted pears
- Calories: 353
- Sugar: 20.9 g
- Sodium: 262.6 mg
- Fat: 26.7 g
- Saturated Fat: 3.4 g
- Carbohydrates: 27.1 g
- Fiber: 4.7 g
- Protein: 5.8 g
- Cholesterol: 77.5 mg