This simple loaf cake, adapted from The Kitchn’s Chocolate Olive Oil Cake recipe, comes together in just a few steps and is the perfect snacking cake. Hazelnuts are added into both the batter and sprinkled on top, for extra crunch + the subtle sweetness of the pears balances out the rich chocolate flavor. Serve for dessert with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or enjoy as an afternoon pick-me-up.
Chocolate + Pear Olive Oil Loaf
Makes 1 loaf
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup granulated sugar
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¾ cup olive oil
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup cake flour (all-purpose flour works too)
½ cup boiling water
1/3 cup, plus ¼ cup chopped hazelnuts
1 medium pear or 2 small pears, thinly sliced (I used Asian Pears)
Sprinkle of powdered sugar, for decorating
Preheat oven to 425F. Grease a 9x5 loaf pan and line with parchment, so the parchment hangs over the sides.
In a large bowl, sift together cocoa powder, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add in olive oil, eggs, egg yolk and vanilla and whisk to combine. Slowly add in flour and hazelnuts, and stir until batter is smooth. Mix in boiling water and continue stirring until batter is silky.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and top with chopped hazelnuts and pear slices, arranging in an overlapping pattern (you want to make sure that when you slice the loaf, each slice has a bit of pear). Bake for 35-40 minutes, until edges of the cake start to pull away and a toothpick comes out clean.
Place loaf pan on a cooling rack and let cake cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes before removing it. Once cake cools completely, top with powdered sugar and enjoy.