Almond Cake with Poached Balsamic Pears

Almond Cake with Roasted Balsamic Pears

1 ½ Cups almond flour or almond meal (Certified Gluten free) firmly packed
1 ½ Cups Gluten free cake flour mix
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp ground allspice
½ tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp fine-grain sea salt
3 tbsp of flax seed plus 4 ounces of water, beaten and rested for 10 minutes
⅔ cup + 1 tsp maple syrup
1 tsp Almond extract
1 tsp Vanilla extract
¼ tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
1 cup almond milk
1 orange – zested and juiced (set zest aside, reserve the juice)
4 Pears Bosc or Anjou peeled, cored and sliced soaked in balsamic vinegar
½ cup balsamic vinegar
¼ cup of crushed whole almonds or sliced almonds for garnish

Preheat the oven to 375F
Grease a 9-inch pan or a springform pan with oil and dust with a little of the cake flour.
Before you start to mix, do your flax seed/water mix and peel, core, slice and marinate the pears, then proceed.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the almond meal, baking powder, baking soda, cardamom, all spice, ginger and sea salt.
In another bowl, combine the beaten flax seed mixture, maple syrup, olive oil, vanilla extract, almond extract, ACV and the zest of your orange. Use a whisk to mix well. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. Stir just until there are a few clumps remaining, then pour into the cake pan, take some of the marinated pear slices and arrange in a circle on top of the cake.
Bake for 35 minutes, pull out and sprinkle with sliced almonds, put back in the oven for another 5 minutes or until the cake is almost golden brown and the center is firm to the touch. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean, place the cake on a wire rack to cool to room temperature.

Once the cake is out of the oven, combine the orange juice with 1 tsp balsamic vinegar in a small bowl. Warm over medium heat, while stirring, just until the balsamic is blended into the juice, add the sliced almonds and then brush the orange glaze over the warm cake. It should soak right in, let the cake cool down.

For the Balsamic Pears:
While the cake is in the oven, mix pears and balsamic vinegar, let rest for about 15 minutes, place in a roasting pan or sauté pan and cook in a 375F oven for about 15 minutes.
Once the cake has cool down, use a sharp knife to slice into wedges, transfer each piece to a plate and garnish with the roasted balsamic pears.

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