Chocolate Pear Pudding

More like a soft cake than American pudding. But rich and wonderful anyway.

Yields: 6-8 servings

28 ounces pear halves in juice (2 cans)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2/3 cup superfine sugar (see Note)
10 tablespoons soft butter (plus extra for greasing)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

7 ounces bittersweet chocolate (broken into pieces)
1/2 cup strong black coffee or 1 teaspoon instant coffee made up with 1/2 cup boiling water
7 tablespoons superfine sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream

Preheat the oven to 400F and grease a 8 1/2 inch square ovenproof dish with butter.
Drain the pears and arrange them on the base of the dish.
Put all the remaining ingredients in a food processor and process until you have a batter with a soft consistency.
Spread the batter over the pears, and bake for 30 minutes.

Let stand out of the oven for 5 or 10 minutes and then cut into slabs — I cut 2 down and 2 across to make 9 slices — and serve with chocolate sauce.

To make the chocolate sauce.
Place the chocolate pieces in a heavy based saucepan with the coffee and sugar and melt over a low heat, stirring occasionally.
Once it has nearly melted stir in the cream, and once it has made a smooth sauce take off the heat and pour into a bowl.

Note: Superfine sugar can be bought in many upper end grocery stores or baking stores. Or you can make it by taking regular granulated sugar and whizzing it for a few seconds in a coffee grinder.