Chocolate cream pear tart

I suggest to abandon the old Roman ‘October’ name and change it to ‘Leaftober’. Currently I notice the huge leaves fall. We have plenty of leaves everywhere. Some of them even fell on the cake. Shortbread shell, inside the filling based on the French frangipane (creamy mixture made of almonds and butter) but with chocolate. It became delicious chocolate cream with almond texture. All is topped with pears which combine with chocolate just perfectly. Everything covered with big layer of leaves – very tasty leaves. Enjoy!


1 tart ø 10 inch


Ingredients for the base:

  • 2/3 cup (150g) softened butter
  • 7 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2  cups (320g) all purpose flour


  • 150 g ground almonds (almond meal)
  • ½ cup (100g) sugar
  • ½ cup minus 1 tablespoon (100g) butter
  • 70 g chocolate (I used semi-sweet 55%)
  • 1 egg
  • 3-4 pears, peeled and sliced


  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 tablespoons granulated sugar


Shortbread base: in the bowl of a stand mixer place the softened butter and sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Stir in egg and vanilla, mix together. Gradually add flour still mixing on medium speed until the dough forms a ball (the sides of the bowl should be almost clean). The amount of flour you need could vary because of flour type. If the dough is still very soft and does not shape a ball add more flour, one tablespoon at the time. When is ready, remove it from the bowl, wrap in a cling film and let cool in the fridge for at least 1-2 hours.

Make filling: melt chocolate in water bath. All remaining ingredients except pears mix together until smooth. Add chocolate, mix until incorporated.

Place the cooled pastry on a lightly floured surface and roll out into 1/5 inch thick piece. Fill pan with prepared pastry and press to place properly. Re-roll the remaining pastry. Spread the chocolate mixture over the base. Arrange pear slices all over the spread. They may lay in more than one layer. Cut out different sizes leaves from remaining pastry and arrange them over the pear layer. Beat the egg yolk with milk in a small bowl and brush the top of the pastry (leaves) with. Sprinkle with granulated sugar. Place the tart in the fridge until the oven is heated.

Bake at 375°F for 40 minutes (until the pastry is golden brown and the filling looks baked). Cool after baking on a wire rack.


Category: Pastries/tarts.

Tags: almonds, chocolate, pears.

Pumpkin latte cheesecake

Delicious, autumnal cheesecake connecting the pumpkin and coffee flavours. It is very creamy and delicate, perfectly matches the October mood. The tastes of pumpkin and coffee are well detectable and create harmonious composition. The topping of whipped cream makes every bite melting in your mouth like a sip of pumpkin latte. Very yummy dessert. Enjoy!


You should make this cheesecake a day before because it must spend the night in the fridge to become proper structure.

round spring pan 9 inch



  • 170 g tea biscuits
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

Pumpkin layer:

  • 250 g cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup pump kin puree
  • ½ cup whipping cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch

Coffee layer:

  • 250 g cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoon instant coffee (powder or granules)
  • ½ cup whipping cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon coffee liqueur (I used Kahlua)


  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee (powder or granules)
  • 100 ml whipping cream



Make the base: process biscuits in the food processor until very fine (sand texture). Add cocoa powder and melted butter and mix until well incorporated. Line the bottom of a spring pan with parchment paper. Spoon the mixture evenly pressing lightly with a spoon. Let it cool in the fridge.

Make pumpkin layer: In a bowl of a stand mixer beat all ingredients until smooth mixture form.

Make coffee layer: heat the cream until hot and stir in the coffee powder. Mix until smooth. Let cool slightly. In a bowl of a stand mixer beat remaining ingredients until smooth mixture form. Add coffee with cream, mix shortly.  

Cheesecake will be baked in water bath (bain-marie) so wrap the spring pan filled with biscuit base  in two pieces of aluminium foil. Spoon the cheese mixture over the biscuit base, alternating pumpkin and coffee layer (one ladle of each at the time). You may mix them with wooden skewer for marble effect. Place the pan in a bigger pan filled with hot water to the half-way of spring pan sides. Place both pans together in hot oven (325°F) and bake for 1 hour. The cheesecake have to be set on its whole surface, if is not bake it longer. Once is baked remove from bigger water pan, waste the aluminium foil and place cheesecake in pan in the fridge for overnight.

Next day remove cheesecake from the pan and place on a cake stand. Dust with coffee powder and whipped cream rosettes. Store in fridge.



 Category: Cheesecakes.

Tags: coffee, pumpkin.

Mini pumpkin bread with maple syrup

Of course they are not real bread – they are cakes. The name is connected to the size and shape of loaf. Maybe they should be called rather square muffins. We have Autumn season so the right time for pumpkin baking. Here the combo with maple syrup what is very successful if we speak about taste. For more joy the top is poured with maple caramel. The cake smells like Autumn and is very moist (maybe even sticky). It matches perfectly the Autumnal vibe (and a cup of coffee). Enjoy!


6 mini loaf or 12 – hole muffin pan



  • ½ cup plant oil
  • ¾ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ cup pumpkin puree (store bought or home made)
  • ¼ cup kefir or buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • ¼ cup pecans (cut roughly)
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

Maple caramel:

  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup whipping cream



Grease and dust with flour mini loaf pan or line 12 – hole standard muffin pan. Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a bowl of a stand mixer beat oil, sugar and maple syrup until light. Add eggs, one at the time beating until combined. Add pumpkin puree, kefir and orange zest. In a separated bowl mix flour, soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Gradually add flour mixture to the oil mixture mixing until just combined. Add pecans and raisins. Fill each pan hole to the ¾ of capacity. Bake for 40-45 minutes (the wooden skewer inserted into the centre could be a little covered with crumbs). Leave in the pan for few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.  

Prepare maple caramel: pour maple syrup to the sauce pan and heat until boiling. Boil for further 5 minutes until darker slightly. Stir in butter and cream and cook for 5-10 minutes until slightly thicken. Cool slightly. Pour over cakes before serving.






Category: Tea- and bundtcakes.

Tags: maple syrup, pecans, pumpkin, raisins.

Simple plum cake

Among many plum bakes this one distinguishes itself with simplicity and quick preparing. The cake is fluffy and soft, smells of almond and plum juice. Perfect for every Autumn tea time. Enjoy!


round pan ø 9 inch



  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • zest of half lemon
  • 2 cups all purpose or cake flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup kefir
  • 14-15 (blue/prune) plums, pitted and halved
  • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds

icing sugar for dusting


Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line the pan with parchment paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer beat butter, almond extract and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs (one at the time) and mix together. Add lemon zest, mix together. In another bowl mix together flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until all ingredients are combined. Add kefir, mix until incorporated. Spoon the cake mixture to the pan. Arrange plum halves around the outer edge (cut side down, slightly slanted). Fill the same way the center surface. Sprinkle with sliced almonds. Bake (preferably in convection oven) for 40 minutes (until the wooden skewer inserted into center comes out clean). If you bake in traditional oven maybe you will need to use broil mode for 3-5 minutes after baking. Remove from the oven, cool in pan for 1 hour then transfer to a plate.

Dust with icing sugar before serving.




Category: Fruit cakes.

Tags: almonds, plums.

Cereal cake with plums

Easy sponge cake, which contains three cereals: wheat, oat and corn. It is hard to explain but the taste is really cereal-y, rustic, autumnal nostalgic. The plums addition revives the flavour, gives sourness and intensity. The texture is moist and fluffy but still light. Stays fresh for few days. Enjoy!


10 cups budtcake pan



  • ½ cup corn meal
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 large eggs
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 ¼ cups dark brown sugar*
  • 1 cup natural kefir
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 6-8 plums (I used blue/prune plums), pitted and halved

*if you like very sweet cakes add ¼ cup more sugar



Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease pan and dust with flour.

In a bowl mix together corn meal, oats, flour and baking powder.

In the bowl of an electric mixer beat oil and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs (one at the time) and mix together. Add milk and kefir, mix together. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and mix until all ingredients are combined. Press plum halves into the dough arranging them one by one in a row in the middle between longer sides. Bake for 45-50 minutes (until the wooden skewer inserted into center comes out clean). Remove from the oven, cool in pan then transfer to a plate.



Category: Tea- and bundtcakes.

Tags: cereal, oat, plums.