Recipe courtesy of Inniskillin Winery

Black Walnut and Almond Cake with Eiswein Sabayon and Vanilla Bean Caramel Pear Skewers

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  • Level: Advanced
  • Total: 2 hr 32 min
  • Prep: 1 hr 15 min
  • Inactive: 2 min
  • Cook: 1 hr 15 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
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10 egg yolks

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon good quality bittersweet chocolate, melted

1 vanilla bean, scraped

1 cup black walnuts, ground in food processor

10 egg whites

1 cup icing sugar

3 tablespoons ground ladyfinger biscuits

1 cup blanched almonds, ground in food processor

1/2 lemon, juiced


1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup water

4 vanilla beans

2 pears, Bosc or Bartlett

1/2 lemon, juiced

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup sugar


4 egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup eiswein


  1. Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan, and line the base with parchment paper.
  2. In a standing electric mixer whisk the yolks with the sugar until thick and light colored. Fold in chocolate, vanilla, and walnuts until just combined. Pour mixture into the prepared cake pan.
  3. Using a clean bowl again with the whisk, beat egg whites until soft peaks form, add icing sugar and continue beating until stiff. Gently fold in biscuits, almonds, and lemon juice.
  4. Pour mixture on top of walnut mixture already in cake pan. Bake in preheated oven for 55 minutes, or until skewer inserted in center comes out clean.
  5. Pears: Bring sugar and water to a boil in small pan. Let boil for 30 seconds, lower heat to a simmer and add vanilla beans.
  6. Poach vanilla beans for 10 minutes, remove from syrup and let dry in oven set at a very low heat (160 degrees F) for 2 hours. Halve each vanilla bean, making 8 pieces.
  7. Peel pears, halve, and remove seeds. Cut pears into large cubes, sprinkle with lemon juice, thread 3 to 4 cubes onto each vanilla bean.
  8. Heat butter and sugar in pan until a caramel color is reached. Place pear skewers in caramelized butter and allow to caramelize on all sides, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove skewers from pan.
  9. Sabayon: Beat yolks with sugar in a medium bowl until light. Place bowl over simmering water and whisk in the eiswein. Beat until mixture triples in volume. Remove from heat and serve immediately with cake.
  10. Serve with cake and sabayon.
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