A cream torte is like a cross between a cake, a custard, and a dutch baby. The tender-sweet varieties of apples used here soften more readily than some when baked, making them a better match for the delicate cake.
Inspired by French financiers, these small cakes are dense with the warm flavors of almond, orange zest, and butter. The grapes become a little jammy after baking, which complements the cakes’ richness.
A favorite way to serve fall’s Fuyu persimmons is to accent their delicate fruitiness with cinnamon and lemon. For the best flavor, let fruit ripen at room temperature until it’s bright orange and has a slight give; this may take 1 week. You’ll need a jelly roll pan and an oval-shaped cookie cutter or small knife.
Feel free to swap in other squash in pastry chef Michelle McKenzie’s recipe: Sugar Pie comes out sweeter, and canned pumpkin is mellow-tasting, if less distinctive. Shauna Sever, an 18 Reasons instructor, suggested the spicy gingersnap layer. You’ll need a 9-in. deep-dish pie pan.
Somewhere between a custard and a pancake, you’ll find clafoutis. This version of the classic French dessert, made with slightly floral Comice pears, is best when the stem end of the pears yields slightly to the touch, signaling that the fruit is flavorful but neither hard nor squishy.