Preheat the oven to 180'C.
Butter a cake tin and line with baking parchment.
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over simmering water (bain-marie).
Peel and grate the pears.
Sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder together.
In a bowl, beat the sugar and the butter together until the mixture is pale and fluffy. Beat the eggs into the butter mix one at a time. Incorporate the oil into the butter mix and then fold in the grated pears. Once incorporated, fold in the flour and cocoa mixture. Finally, stir in the melted chocolate.
Pour the mixture into the cake tin, transfer to the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Check the cake with a skewer - if it comes out clean, the cake is ready. If not, return the cake to the oven and cook for a further 10 minutes.
Allow the cake to cool in the tin before icing.
Place the cream and golden syrup in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and whisk in the cocoa powder. Return to the heat, bring back to the boil and simmer for 3 minutes. Allow to cool and thicken slightly before icing the cake.
«Take care not to overwork the mixture once you have folded in the flour - you want to keep the air in the mixture to prevent the cake from becoming dense once baked.»