The weekend is starting soon. Hooray! In Austria the 26th of october is a national holiday, so it’s going to be a super long weekend. On days like this I want to relax, drink some tea, read a book or meet with friends. Since it got quite chilly there’s even more reason to warm up with some hot beverage and a nice piece of cake when you get home after a refreshing autumn walk. Two days ago my mother and I took a walk near my home and found some pears laying beneath a pear tree that nobody seemed to need, so I packed four of these juicy and delicious fruits in my bag – all the while dreaming up ideas of what to make with them.
Normally I don’t believe in fate, but when I checked with pinterest that evening the first pin I saw was a super deliciously looking poppy seed cheesecake with pears on top! Can you believe that? There was no way I could ignore that obvious sign, especially since I had some walnut cookie dough sitting in my freezer, waiting to be baked into something wonderful. And this cake practically screams autumn! I just love seasonal food.
Since I had everything I needed at home I decided make the cake today because we would visit our friends. I will post the recipe for the dough another time. Normally I use the dough to make sand tarts for christmas, but walnuts are in season now so who cares. It’s delicious anyway… I didn’t stricktly stick to the recipe I found on pinterest but used what I had at home. You can top the cake with whatever fruits you like, but pears, walnuts and cranberries are the perfect autumn treats. Have a wonderful weekend!
- 500g creamcheese
- 2 eggs (medium size)
- 1/2 vanilla bean or 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 4 tbsp cane sugar (or more if you like it sweeter)
- zest of one lemon
- 3 tbsp ground poppy seeds
- 1 cup (240ml) milk
- 1 tbsp cane sugar
- 1 medium ripe pear
- 1tsp cane sugar
- 1/2 tsp dark rum
- ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp lemon juice
- cranberry jam
- shortcrust pastry
- Peel and slice the pear. Put the slices into a small pot, add a bit of water (about 1/3 cup), sugar, rum, a bit of cinnamon and lemon juice. Cook the slices on medium low heat for about 3-4 minutes. You don't want them too soft, so check when stirring. Drain and set aside.
- For the poppy seed filling add the ground poppy seeds into a small pot, add milk and sugar and bring to a boil on medium heat. Once it boils turn the heat down to low and let the seeds soak up the milk, stirring from time to time. If you don't cook the sees beforehand they might stay crispy and that's not something you want... trust me. Set aside.
- Now mix all the ingredients for the cheesecake filling, if you want your cheesecake more fluffy you can seperate the yolks from the eggwhites and whip the eggwhites with a bit of sugar until soft peaks form. If you do that, carefully mix in the eggwhites in two batches after you mixed everything else.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Now roll out your dough to about 1/8"-1/4" (around 4-5mm), generously butter a 9 inch pie dish, put the dough in then add the cheesecake filling. Add the poppy seed filling and slightly stir it in. You can create some patterns if you like. Bake on the middle rack for 35 minutes. Then add the pears and little spoonfulls of cranberry jam on top. Bake for another 30 minutes or until the cheesecake filling has set. It will harden a bit more when it cools down.
- Serve slightly warm with a scoop of vanilla icecream if you like. Enjoy!
- The original recipe makes for a bigger batch, but I like cheesecake best when it is fresh so I rather make a smaller cake that we can finish off in a day or two. You can always double the recipe if you like.