Saturday, 15 October 2016

Soft Rolls

These homemade rolls are fast and easy to make. After you prepare the dough, you have one and half hour to work on something that is in your schedule for the day. Then, it is all about baking the rolls, and enjoying the smell of fresh bread in the house. 

I make these regularly, with all kind of flour mixture, because they serve my kids with freshness at school lunches. Sometimes, when I am out of ideas for the lunch bag, it is just a bread roll with some cream cheese. Usually this is in the menu on the day, after I bake them. 

for the dough: 

750 g white unbleached flour
18 g olive oil

7 g dry yeast
140 g lukewarm water

12 g salt
330 g lukewarm water

for the glaze:

1 egg white

prepare the dough:

1. Scale the flour and olive oil in the bowl of a mixer
2. In a glass, scale the yeast and first quantity of water. Stir to dissolve the yeast.
3. Scale the salt in a small coffee cup.
4. Scale the rest of the water.
5. After the yeast is dissolved, add the liquid to the flour mixture. 
6. With a hook on the mixer, start stirring on slow, adding the rest of the water. 
7. Before the last addition of water is added, add the salt, while mixer is working, trying to avoid contact with the yeast. Salt is a strong inhibiter of the yeast. They do not love each other at all.
8. Finish the mixing in about five minutes. 
9. Cover the bowl with clear plastic film and leave to rise in a warm place or sunny spot in the house for an hour and a half.

Now is your time - finish all the things you have in mind before this next step in:

tailoring the rolls:

Have your oven hot at 210°C.

1. Divide the dough in 12 small pieces. Form the rolls. Make sure you add flour when working on these steps, just enough so the rolls do not become dense. 
2. Arrange the rolls on a slightly floured baking pan.
3. Cut a cross on each roll with a serrated knife. 
4. Brush some egg white on each one and place the pan in the oven.
5. Rotate the pan halfway through baking.
6. Bake until very light golden.

Leave the rolls on a wire rack to rest, after baking.


Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Thanksgiving Leaves

Another Thanksgiving, another day to share the things we are thankful for.

How unfortunately late this autumn is! I was barely able to find colourful leaves in my garden. Only the roses are ready for their winter relax.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Thank you for visiting!

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Rhubarb Lattice Tart

The rhubarb pie I have never tried before. Then I was involved into a conversation at work how perfect the combination between rhubarb and strawberry is. There still was some time before the strawberry season was over, I thought it is time to try this.

for the pâte sucrée:

190 g all purpose flour
70 g confectioners' sugar
25 g almond meal
115 g unsalted butter, softened
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
25 g egg (half large egg)

Few strawberries in my garden are trying to be kissed by the late summer sun, playing 'hide-and-seek'   under the big leaves of the plant. I found even one flower - happily blooming in its proud beauty, but unfortunately never to produce any fruit. Nights are getting colder - all the perennial plants in the garden prepare for their long winter sleep.

My beautiful roses, of course, require much more attention than any other plant. This is their strongest season - no harmful insects, crisp fresh air, warm day sun. I love the roses in the early autumn. Their flowers are so festive, stating out loud that there is beauty in every season and summer is not forgotten.

prepare the tart shell: 

1. Weigh the flour, half of the sugar and the almond meal in a bowl.
2. Beat the butter until very soft and fluffy
3. Add the rest of the sugar to the butter and beat until very light consistency.
4. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl, adding the vanilla extract.
5. Add the dry ingredients in two additions, beating briefly in between.
6. Incorporate the egg. 
7. Roll out the formed dough into a rectangle, wrap in foil and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.

8. Take the dough out of the fridge. Roll it thinly (about 4 mm) to size that covers a rectangular tart pan 11 x 35 cm. Place the dough in the tart dish and form the shell, slightly pressing the dough to fit the dish evenly.
9. Refrigerate.

For the tart filling I used Frangipane.
For the rhubarb lattice, I was inspired by talented Allie from Baking a moment .

for the rhubarb lattice:

250 ml water
70 g sugar

prepare the rhubarb lattice:

1. With a vegetable peeler, slice the rhubarb length wise.
2. Prepare the sugar syrup: Bring the water to boil. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Reduce the heat to medium.
3. Add 3-4 rhubarb slices at once. Cook for 4 min. Drain on a paper towel.
4. On the baked and slightly warm tart, make the lattice top. I have that in pictures for the apple tartelettes here.
5. Bake the whole finished tart for 7 more minutes.

Glaze with warm apricot jam.
Serve and store at room temperature.

🍓Have a sour and sweet day, everyone!

💕 IN

Friday, 11 December 2015

Truffle Cake

December 9th, the Eastern Christianity celebrates St. Anne. The name comes from Hebrew "Channah", meaning "favour" or "grace". St. Anne, mother of Mary and grandmother of Jesus is an emblem figure, keeper of the families, guardian angel of all mothers. 

It happens, that we celebrate this name holiday, because of a special little family member. Our Ana is blessed with her name and we are blessed to have that magnificent creature for a daughter. I am sure her name suits her perfectly. 

What Ana loves the most as a dessert? Chocolate, may be some chocolate and a bit of chocolate, garnished with chocolate. I decided to make this truffle cake for her and knew it will become her favourite. What is truffle cake without truffles? I am very happy to use the formidably looking and delicately delicious truffles from Ferrero Rocher. They complete my recipe perfectly. 

for the cake:

60 g chocolate
100 g unsalted butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
5 egg yolks

4 egg whites
125 g sugar

110 g flour

prepare the cake:

Preheat the oven to 190°C. Line an 8" cake pan.

1. Melt the chocolate at medium heat over a bain-marie. Set aside.
2. Beat the butter and salt until very creamy. Add the vanilla extract. Beat well.
3. Beat in the melted cooled chocolate.
4. Add the yolks one by one, beating well after each addition.
5. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites and sugar, until soft peaks are formed.
6. Fold in the whites to the butter mixture, alternating with the flour, finishing with the whites. Work gently to keep the volume of the whites.
7. Transfer to the pan and bake until the cake inserter comes out dry.
8. Leave the cake to cool completely on a wire rack.

for the filling:

570 ml heavy cream
450 g dark chocolate Lindt

prepare the filling:

(prepare the filling a day in advance)

1. Chop the chocolate in a bowl.
2. Bring the cream to a boil.
3. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until smooth and glossy.
4. Refrigerate overnight or at least for 6 hours

prepare the chocolate shavings:

With a carrot peeler, "peel" a  block of Lindt chocolate to create chocolate shavings. Reserve at cool place until needed.


1. Cut the cake into four layers
2. Layer the cake, alternating the cake layers and filling.
3.Thinly cover the whole cake with the filling and freeze for an hour.
4. Cover with another thin layer of filling and smooth nicely. Keep it at room temperature. Save some of the filling to pipe the rosettes.
5. Cover with the chocolate shavings. Pipe twelve rosettes around the edge of the cake. Top each one with a truffle.
6. Chill for at least 4 hours before serving.
7. Store in a cold place. Serve cold.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Chocolate Cake with Mascarpone Cream

This autumn was really pretty and stayed for the longest time. I have a feeling it is still fall outside - the flowers still have colours, the wind does not cut your ears when you walk outside, and robins are still chasing each other in the sky.

My roses were blooming in November. I did not cut them this year, I left them bloom and they really did to some point. Later though, they closed and prepared for the winter sleep.

In the month of December, there is a strong need for warmth and love. We do not have the snow out yet. But a nice glass of wine and a piece of chocolate cake in a late dark December night is always appreciated.

I think Smitten kitchen's idea has a perfect place in my collection of recipes now. 

This cake has a dense texture, but a very light taste. Red wine looses the alcohol during baking. As a characteristic of wine, tannin adds both bitterness and astringency as well as complexity. Tannins leave a unique after-taste to the cake, that makes a perfect combination with the mascarpone topping. 

for the cake:
(use a bundt cake form for this recipe)

125 g butter
180 g golden brown sugar
150 g custard sugar
3 large eggs

200 g flour
60 g cocoa
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt

180 ml red wine, Merlot
50 ml tangerine 
20 ml heavy cream

prepare the cake:

1. Scale the dry ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.
2. Measure the liquid ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.
3. Beat the butter and both type of sugar, until very light and pale.
4. Ad the eggs - one by one.
5. Add one third of the liquid and then alternate with the dry ingredients.
6. Bake at 180°C, until a toothpick in the centre comes out clean.
7. Leave on a wire rack to cool completely.

for the topping:

200 g mascarpone cheese

30 g confectioners' sugar
200 ml heavy cream

prepare the topping:

1. Beat the mascarpone slightly.
2. In a separate bowl, beat the well chilled cream with the confectioners' sugar, to soft peaks.
3. Beat well both ingredients until well combined.


1. Using a star shaped nozzle, fill a piping bag with the topping.
2. Pipe swirls and stars of your choice.
3. Chill the cake for 4 hours.

Sunday, 25 October 2015


for the yellow cake:

You will need half recipe of Genoise Cake
You will need one recipe of chocolate ganache 

for the chocolate cake:

4 egg whites
180 g sugar
200 g butter, softened
3 g vanilla extract 

180 g all purpose flower
40 g cocoa
1 tsp baking powder

Heat the oven to 170. Prepare a round 6" cake form.

1. Beat the egg whites with 2/3 of the sugar, until firm.
2. Beat the butter with rest of the sugar and vanilla extract until creamy. 
3. Combine the dry ingredients. Add 1/3 of it to the butter. Beat slightly.
4. Add half of the egg white mixture. Mix. Add the second third of the dry ingredients, followed by the whites, finishing with the last part of the flour.
5. Bake in the prepared pan for about 30-40 min, or until dry centre.


1. Cut the cooled cakes in two layers. The chocolate cake is cut in three layers. Cut the third layer in small pieces and store in an air tight container. Have the pieces on their own. Perfect tea deserts.
2. Use two different size glasses or bowls. Using the bigger bowl, cut out the bigger insert of both - white and cocoa cakes. Cut out the smaller inserts from the first cut cakes. 
3. Place the bigger white cake inserts in the chocolate rings, and fill with the chocolate smaller cakes. Fill the white cakes ring with the chocolate bigger cake and fill with the white small cake insert. 
4. Assemble the cake, spreading the chocolate ganache on each layer, making sure the checkmate effect is achieved.
5. Glase top and sides of the cake with the rest of the ganache.

Monday, 12 October 2015

Thanksgiving Party

You will need:

one recipe Genoise cake
one recipe Almond Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache, in which almonds are substitute for pecans
two recipes Pumpkin Cream Mousselin
one recipe Pecan Paste

a lot of chocolate leaves

for the Pumpkin Cream Mousselin:

250 ml whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean

3 egg yolks
100 g brown sugar

30 g corn starch
30 g white flour
5 g cinnamon 

130 g butternut squash - rosted 

120 g unsalted butter, softened 

1. Roast the pumpkin the day before. Peel the butternut squash and cut in small pieces. Roast on a parchment paper, until softened. Let it cool. Work the pieces in a blender, until purée consistency. Close in a box and refrigerate. 

2. Scale the dry ingredients in a bowl.

3. Beat slightly the egg yolks and two thirds of the sugar . Mix in the dry ingredients.

3. Scrape the seeds from half vanilla bean into the milk, add the last third of the sugar and bring to boil. 

4. Pour half of the hot milk into the egg mixture, stirring constantly (dissolving the sugar). Pour the yolk mixture back to the pot where the other half of the milk is and place over medium heat. Stir constantly.

5. Place the pastry cream in a deep dish, cover it with cling foil, (the foil should touch the cream) avoiding crust to be formed. Leave to cool at room temperature. 

6. Beat in the pumpkin purée.

7. Whip in the softened butter.

8. Cover with foil and refrigerate, until needed. Before use, Whip the cream.

for the pecan paste:

200 g pecans
200 g custard sugar

1. Toast the pecans for 5-7 min at 180 C.
2. Caramelize the sugar. Add the pecans and stir to cover all the nuts in caramel.
3. Spread on a parchment paper and let cool.
4. Brake the pieces of caramelized pecans into a blender and pulse to crush. Continue blending, until the paste is formed.
5. Store in a jar, until needed.

Thanksgiving is all about giving gratitude, respect and sharing autumn taste. I love this holiday. Everything my sous chef :) and I did, we did with love and devotion. It was the best time spent collecting leaves, making them into chocolate duplicates, testing the recipe, and choosing to sleep less at the night before Thanksgiving, so to manage to finish our gifts. What precious time for me...!

The combination of dark chocolate and Pumpkin Mousselin cream is just indescribable. A definite autumn taste and at the same time very delicate and high class.