Pumpkin chocolate cheesecake

Autumnal cheesecake with pumpkin and chocolate combo flavours. This combination is successful and very delicious. The chocolate layer is not too intense because I used semi sweet 55% cocoa chocolate. Too high percentage of cocoa beans might be too overwhelming for subtle pumpkin flavour. On the top I made a contrasting pattern which gives attraction and different look. The whole cheesecake is delicate and light. 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
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder

Cheese layer:

  • 600 g cream cheese
  • 1 cup (200 g) golden sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • ¾ cup pumpkin puree*
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • ½ - 1 teaspoon cinnamon (depending on your taste)
  • 3 ½ ounces (100 g) dark chocolate semi –sweet (54,5%)
  • 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.

Cheesecake: pour the cream to the saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from heat and add broken into pieces chocolate. Let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk until smooth mixture. Let it cool slightly but do not let set the mixture.

In a bowl of a stand mixer beat together cream cheese, sugar and eggs until smooth and fluffy. Divide the mixture into half. Add pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice and cinnamon to the one half. Mix until combined. Add chocolate with cream to the second half. Mix until combined. 

Cheesecake will be baked in water bath (bain-marie) so wrap the spring pan filled with biscuit base  in two pieces of aluminium foil. Save two tablespoons of chocolate cheese mixture and spoon the rest over the biscuit base. Spoon the pumpkin cheese mixture over the chocolate layer. With a teaspoon drop small dollops of chocolate cheese mixture on the top of cheesecake. With a toothpick shape them into leaf/wave/zigzag shapes.

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 a little longer. Once is baked remove from bigger water pan, waste the aluminium foil and place cheesecake in pan to the fridge for overnight.

Next day remove cheesecake from the pan and place on a cake stand.


*store bought pumpkin puree is often very moist and not suitable for cheesecake. If possible drain it on the sieve or better use homemade pumpkin puree.



 Category: Cheesecakes.

Tags: cinnamon, chocolate, glutenfree, pumpkin.

Coconut pie cups with apricots and apples

Hand pies are usually baked as round or rectangular shaped cookies and quite flat. I decided to shape them as small cups. Shortbread pastry is made with desiccated coconut. The Apple apricots filling has been enriched by Bourbon and thyme. Light and delightful dessert for Autumn tea time. Enjoy!


about 30 pieces


Ingredients for the base:

  • ½  cup softened butter
  • 8 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 1 egg
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of baking powder
  • 1 ¾  (270 g) cups all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (75 g) desiccated coconut


  • 6-8 apricots (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 apples
  • seeds of 1 vanilla been
  • ½ cup (100 g) dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons Bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme (optional)


  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk


Shortbread base: in the bowl of a stand mixer place the softened butter and sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Stir in egg, salt and baking powder, mix together. Add coconut. Gradually add flour still mixing on medium speed until the dough forms a ball (the sides of the bowl should be almost clean). 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: wash fruits and peel apples. Chop into small pieces. Place to the frying pan along with sugar, vanilla seeds, lemon zest and thyme. Heat over medium heat for about 8-10 minutes until the mixture is jam like. Add Bourbon, cook one more minute. Remove from the heat and cool.

Place the cooled pastry on a lightly floured surface and divide into half. Roll out one piece into 1/5 inch (4-5 mm) thick sheet. Cut out circles with cookie cutter 2 3/5 inch (6.5 cm) in diameter. Line the mini muffin pan holes with one circle each (covering bottom and sides). Fill with the filling to ¾ of the height. Roll out the remaining pastry into 1/5 inch (4-5 mm) thick. Cut out circles 2 inch/5 cm in diameter. Make egg wash whisking together egg and milk. Brush the edges of each smaller circle and cover each cup with one circle. Make as much circles (bigger and smaller) as the pastry and filling last. Brush the top of each cup with remaining egg wash and make with knife a small cross shaped indentation.

Bake at 350°F/180°C for 20 minutes (until the pastry is golden). Cool after baking in pan then unmould.


Category: Pastries/tarts.

Tags: apple, apricots, bourbon, coconut, thyme.

Rose shaped tart with peaches and blueberries

The tart with peaches and blueberries is a very delicious dessert as peaches are the most tasty fruits in bakes. Classic shortbread base, the layer of almond frangipane and lots of fruits on the top. Blueberries are here only an addition, the peaches rule definitely. For having fun and pretty look I shaped some peaches into roses – it is not complicated and the effect really impressive. Enjoy!


1 tart ø 10 inch


Ingredients for the base:

  • 2/3 cup softened butter
  • 7 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2  cups all purpose flour


  • 10 pieces (small) fresh peaches
  • 100 g blueberries
  • 3 ½ oz (100 g) almond flour
  • 1/3 cup (70 g) sugar
  • ¼  cup (50 g) butter, softened
  • 1 egg


Shortbread base: in the bowl of a stand mixer place the softened butter and sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Stir in the 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.

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 and cut out the circles 2 inch/5 cm in diameter.

Make the filling: beat all ingredients (except the peaches and blueberries) together to thick smooth paste. Spread this paste over the pastry on the bottom of the pan.

Wash peaches, remove pits, cut into thin slices. Take 6 pastry circles and put them together shaping a line – each circle should partially lay on the previous one. Put the six peach slices over the pastry shaping the line in the same way. Fold the bottom part of pastries over the peaches (see the picture below). Roll the pastry-peach line creating a rose shape. Make eight roses and place them in the center of prepared pan pressing slightly into the filling. Cover the remaining space over the filling with sliced peaches. Sprinkle with blueberries.

Heat the oven to  400°F/200°C. Place the tart to the fridge while the oven is heated.

Bake at 400°F/200°C for 20 minutes then lower the temperature to 350°F/180°C and bake for further 20-25 minutes (until the pastry is golden brown and the fruits’ juice will be leaking). Cool after baking on a wire rack.


Category: Pastries/tarts.

Tags: almonds, blueberry, peach.

Knotted sweet buns with black currant filling

Sweet buns with summer or autumnal fruits are always a good idea and yummy treat. I used the rest of my black currants but you may add literally all kind of fruits. Even more – chocolate, nutella or any nut spread will work perfect too. These buns are twisted into knots and the filling is placed evenly. They are yummy, enjoy!


about 20-25 buns



  • 4 ½  teaspoons dried yeast
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) lukewarm milk
  • 1/3 cup (70 g) sugar
  • 3 cups + 2 tablespoons (500 g) bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup (70 g) butter, melted


  • 250 g berries (fresh or frozen) or 400 g bigger fruit (like apples or pears)
  • 2-3 tablespoons sugar
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch / corn flour


  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 2 tablespoons sugar



Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Make dough: in a medium bowl mix together yeast, lukewarm milk and 1 tablespoon sugar. Let stand for 15 minutes until frothy. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine flour, remaining sugar and salt. Add yeast mixture, egg and vanilla extract. Gradually add melted butter and mix on medium speed until dough is smooth (5-6 minutes) and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. If dough does not pull away from the bowl, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. If the mixture remains too dry and crumbly, add lukewarm water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Once the dough is ready remove from the bowl, place on a working surface and knead for further 3-4 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place dough to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place for 1-1.5 hours until doubled in size.

Make filling: place fruits (bigger sliced into pieces) in a sauce pan. Add sugar and lemon juice and heat until fruits are tender and puree like. Add corn starch and mix to dissolve. Remove from heat and let the mixture cool and thicken.

Place the dough onto the working surface and divide into half. Roll out one piece into a rectangle with longer side about 16 inch/40 cm placed the shorter side as a base. Spread the half of the filling over the vertical half of the dough. Cover with clean half folding dough into half. You should have now the rectangle of 8 inch/20 cm height. Cut the dough into strips about 1 inch/2 ½ cm wide (and 8 inch/20 cm long). Working with one strip at the time hold it with both your hands on the ends and twist few times. Then shape a knot starting with one end as a center. Hide the second end underneath. Place on a lined sheet. Repeat twisting and shaping with remaining strips. Roll out the second half of the dough and repeat all steps.  Let stand buns in a warm place for 20 minutes to rest and puff while preheating oven to 350°F.

Make egg wash whisking egg with milk. Brush tops of buns and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped. Cool on a wire rack.


Category: Yeast cakes.

Tags: blackcurrant, yeast.

Cobbler with biscuits, peaches and bourbon

Cobbler is a Summer/Autumn dessert with fruits and dough. It is kind of pie but without the pastry on the base. Usually the topping is made of pancake style dough arranged roughly. Today recipe is a little different because instead of dough I used mini buttermilk biscuits/scones (flowery shaped). Peaches for the filling are poached in butter-sugar-bourbon sauce what gave them amazing flavour. On the top is additional oat crust making this dessert even more heavenly. And if you serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream you will be in a real heaven. Enjoy!


baking porcelain dish 8 x 12 inch (20 x 30 cm)



  • 2 ½ cups (400 g) all purpose flour
  • ¼ cup (50 g) sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼  teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup (170 g) cold butter
  • ¾  cup (185 ml) buttermilk


  • 3 pounds (1 ½ kg) fresh peaches – about 15-16 pieces
  • ½ cup (100 g ) dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup (65 ml) Bourbon (whisky)
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch/corn flour

Oat crust:

  • ½ cup (55 g) oat flakes
  • 3 tablespoons butter (melted)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar




Prepare scones/biscuits: in a bowl of a stand mixer mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add cold butter in pieces and mix just until crumble like mixture. Add buttermilk and mix until smooth, elastic dough. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a floured surface. Flatten dough into 1 inch (2 cm) thick rectangle. Cut into four even rectangles, stack them all into a pile (one on top of each other) and flatten again into 1 inch (2 cm) thick rectangle. You may help yourself with a rolling pin. Cut out the dough into small (1 ½ inch/3-4 cm in diameter) flowers (or different shapes) with a cookie cutter. Continue until the dough lasts. Place prepared biscuits onto a parchment paper and place to the freezer.

Preheat oven to 400 °F/200°C. Grease baking dish with butter.

Wash fruits, remove pits, cut into eights. Melt the butter on a roasting pan. Add dark brown sugar and heat slowly until dissolved. Add vanilla and bourbon, mix to combine. Add peaches and poach for 10 minutes until tender. Add corn starch, mix until dissolved and remove the pan from the heat. Pour the whole fruit mixture into prepared baking dish. Arrange frozen scones on the top. Brush them with a drop of buttermilk.

In a small bowl mix together oat flakes, sugar and melted butter. Sprinkle the mixture over the top of the dish, between scones and a little onto them.

Put the dish to the preheated oven placing it on the baking sheet (the filling will drip). Bake for 50-55 minutes until the scones are golden brown and filling is bubbling.

Serve warm or cooled, with ice cream or plain.


Category: Fruit cakes.

Tags: bourbon, buttermilk, oat, peach, vanilla.

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