• 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

     Filling:

    • 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

    Topping:

    • 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.

  • Very simple, classic chocolate tart. On the shortbread base – I used homemade pastry, it might be also cookie crumb base. Not many ingredients, easy to prepare. In classic recipes the filling is a mix of chocolate and whipping cream. I used coconut milk instead of dairy cream, which did not worse the taste nor texture but brought some benefits. The filling is lactose free, dairy free, vegan. And a little less in calories. But still delicious. Enjoy!

     

    1 classic tart ø 10 inch

     

    Ingredients for the base:

    • ½  cup (115 g) softened butter
    • 5 tablespoons icing sugar
    • 1 egg
    • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
    • 1 ¾  cups (270 g) all purpose flour

    Filling:

    • 360 g dark semi-sweet chocolate (I used 54,5%)
    • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons (280 ml) coconut milk
    • 1 ½ tablespoons dark brown sugar
    • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
    • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt

    Topping:

    • 2 pears
    • 2-3 tablespoons golden brown sugar (Turbinado)

     

    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 cocoa powder, 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. If it is very flaky and not elastic add cold water, 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.

    Preheat oven to 350°F /180°C. 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. Place the parchment paper over the base and weight the pastry with ceramic balls, peas, bean or another baking pan (empty). Bake blind for 15 minutes. Discard weight and bake for further 10 minutes. Cool.

    Make filling: place the broken chocolate to the bowl. In a saucepan heat coconut milk and sugar until warm (not boil). Add cocoa powder, vanilla and salt and mix together. Pour over chocolate and let stand for 2-3 minutes. Then mix until smooth mixture. Pour over the cooled base and place to the fridge for several hours (better overnight).

    Caramelized pears: preheat oven to 420°F (210°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle with sugar. Cut pears into thin slices and arrange on the sugar. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Cool. Before serving the tart decorate the top with pears. You may dust it with cocoa powder and/or shredded coconut.


     

    Category: No-bake cakes.

    Tags: coconut milk, chocolate, glutenfree, pear, vegan.

  • If you seek an idea for easy, quick and tasty cake for autumnal tea time this one is just perfect. It is very moist cake with nice texture (thanks to bran addition) with sweet pear pieces. I decided for banana frosting after discovered that banana and pear share the same fruit ester called isoamyl acetale and because of that they have similar taste drop. And I can say this is really good combination. Enjoy!

     

    rectangular pan 13 x 9 inch

     

    Ingredients:

    • ¾ cup butter
    • 2 large pears, peeled, cored and chopped finely
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • ½ cup maple syrup
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1 ½ cups flour
    • ½ cup wheat bran
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda

     Banana frosting:

    • 150 g cream cheese, softened
    • 1/3 cup butter, softened
    • 7 tablespoons icing sugar
    • 2 tablespoons powdered freeze-dried bananas
    • 1 tablespoon milk

     Decoration:

    • autumn leaves sprinkles

     

     

     

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking pan with paper parchment.

    In a small sauce pan melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add chopped pears and cook on the medium heat about 12-15 minutes until tender. Remove from the saucepan and set aside. In the same sauce pan melt the remaining butter. Pour to the large bowl and add sugar and maple syrup. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Add eggs and vanilla extract, stir together. Stir in flour, bran, baking powder, salt and soda. Stir in pears. Spread batter In the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes until light brown and puffed. Cool on a wire rack.

    Make frosting: beat cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Add icing sugar, banana powder and milk. Beat until incorporated.

    Spread frosting over the cooled cake. Sprinkle with sprinkles.


     

     

     

    Category: Fruit cakes.

    Tags:banana, bran, maple syrup, pear.

  • This cake seems to be complicated but in fact it is an easy and light treat. On the base we have a low layer of sponge-like cake, then a layer of cinnamon custard, and then rhubarb and pear sprinkled with pomegranate. A little soft, a little crunchy, a little sweet, a little sour - tastes perfectly. And the combo of fruits and cinnamon is as much unusual as yummy. Try and enjoy!

     

    12 x 4 inch loaf pan

     

     Ingredients:

    • ½  cup butter, softened
    • ½ cups granulated sugar
    • 1 large egg
    • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 2 tablespoons custard powder
    • 2 tablespoons sugar extra
    • 1 pear, peeled and cored
    • 4 stalks rhubarb
    • 1 pomegranate

     Cinnamon custard:

    • 1 tablespoon custard powder
    • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    • ½ cup (125 ml) milk
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

    Make custard: mix custard powder, cinnamon and sugar with milk in a small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until mixture boils and thickens. Cook, stirring a further minute. Remove from heat, stir in butter and vanilla extract. Transfer to a small bowl, cover surface with a plastic wrap. Cool.

    Grease and line baking pan. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).

    Thinly slice the pear. Cut rhubarb lengthways into 1 cm (1/2 inch) wide long strips. Cut strips into 10 cm (4 inch) length. Cut pomegranate in half, release seeds and juice. Reserve seeds and juice separately.  

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat butter and sugar at medium speed until fluffy. Add egg, beating well after the addition. Stir in flour, baking powder and custard powder. Spoon mixture into pan, spreading evenly. Top with cinnamon custard, spreading carefully over cake mixture. Alternate pear and rhubarb slices upright on top of custard. Sprinkle with pomegranate seeds. Bake for 25 minutes.

    Meanwhile, stir pomegranate juice and extra sugar in a small saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil. Boil for 5 minutes until thick. Brush warm cake with warm syrup. Serve warm or cool.


     

    The recipe comes from AWW book 'Indulgent cakes'.

    Category: Fruits cakes.

    Tags: Cinnamon, custard, pear, pomegranate, rhubarb.

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