November Light

The day before yesterday, the kitchen was full of little people. Everyone wanted to participate in some way and I was needing to use my imagination in creating cake-making jobs of equal importance. Equality was the theme of the day. One of the kids remembered who had made most of the Mother’s day cake and in her opinion it would be unfair if this wrong was to be repeated again. Diplomacy skills were in need and of course a bit of organization. And I wouldn’t be surprised if she became a human right’s lawyer.

father's day breakfastIn November my kitchen is full of soft light that quickly disappears in the afternoons and yesterday we had a Father’s day breakfast that supposed to be prepared quietly but in fact, but due to the excitement the children didn’t always remember to be so quiet. Erik asked at one point if he could go wake up Bella, as she would prefer to sleep in every morning, just pulling the blanket a little higher and requesting for just another little cat nap before getting up for the day. He crept upstairs, and climbed to the top bunk to wake her up. She must have not protested this particular morning as soon I heard a giant thump and a scramble as they were probably racing to see who reached the stairs first. But they did creep down the stairs again, to try not wake up Isi this morning.

isänpäiväHe probably was awake when we finally made our way upstairs with our tray of breakfast and a song, but he did his best to pretend to be asleep so that the children could wake him up. Happy Father’s day! You are so very important to us ❤

making no-bake mango cheesecake

Lemon-Mango No-bake Cheesecake (to be made the day before serving)

about 14-16 digestive cookies or 12-13 graham crackers, crushed
50 g/1.8 oz butter, melted
3 tbsp sugar


2 dl/1 generous cup of heavy whipping cream
400 g/14 oz marscapone cheese
500 g/17.5 oz quark
1 dl/ 1/2 c sugar
Juice of 1 large lemon
2-3 tbsp lemon curd
zest of one lemon
five gelatin leaves

(boiling water to dissolve the gelatin leaves with)

mango topping
250 g/9 oz puréed mango
1 gelatin leaf

mango no-bake cheesecakeThe Father’s day cake had to be simple enough for the kid’s to make by themselves with a little help and guidance. This cake is easy.

Place the gelatin leaves into a bowl full of cold water to soak for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile crush the graham crackers or cookies and line a 10 inch spring-form with baking paper on the bottom. Place the cookie crumbs in the lined form along with the sugar and melted butter, stir to combine and them pat down using the bottom of a glass to form a crust. Next whip the heavy whipping cream until thick and fold in the marscapone cheese, quark, sugar, lemon juice and zest and lemon curd. Taste and add sugar if you prefer a sweeter tart.

Boil water in a teapot or saucepan and while it is coming to boil, remove five of the gelatin leaves from the cold water. Squeeze the gelatin leaves to remove excess water and place in a very small dish. Pour in just enough boiling water to dissolve the leaves and fold in the hot gelatin mixture with the filling. Pour the cake filling on the prepared cookie crumb crust and smooth the top.

Take the last gelatin leaf and squeeze it free of excess water. Repeat as done above with the boiling water, making sure not to use too much water. Mix the gelatin mix with the puréed mango and spread over the cheesecake filling. Refrigerate.

father's day breakfast 2Father’s day breakfast menu: Popovers, one filled with a dab of butter, Maasdam cheese, lettuce and tomato and other filled with a dab of butter and cloudberry preserves. Blueberry smoothie with kale, mango cheesecake and the coffee was freshly ground Kaffa Roastery’s Indian Monsoon Malabar Barista Blend.

While the children where making the no-bake cheesecake, I decided to roast my two pumpkins I had on hand. One was of the Hokkaido variety, which I tried out for the first time. The pulp was much more denser in comparison to my other pumpkin. The other pumpkin had served double duty as a decoration waiting to be oven-roasted, drained and then puréed. They will become our Thanksgiving and Christmas pumpkin pies.

I noticed that the one pumpkin was filled with little holes made with pen or pencil one morning. I asked the kids, who might have made little holes into my pumpkin? Our two-year old Hugo heard the question, walked over and proudly showed me with swinging motions of his arms of how he had made the holes into the pumpkin. He doesn’t speak much yet, but he understands everything and manages quite swell with a few words, expressions and impressive sign language that he has made up himself. His smile was so wide and his bright blue eyes shone. How could I be mad. Afterall they were going to be roasted and the outer skin was going to be discarded anyways. Recipe for making homemade pumpkin purée can be found here.

roasting pumpkinsroasted pumpkinMy kitchen in November is full of yellows and oranges, candlelight to light the dark mornings and evenings and the soft light from outside. Sometimes the outside light is a shade of gray as it was today and sometimes it too, has golden hues and bright blues.

morning sunNovember morning sun from our dining room window. Happy November!


This In My Kitchen post is part of Celia’s monthly series hosted on Fig Jam Lime Cordial, providing links to kitchens around the world.


    1. Thank you Heather…so nice to hear from you! Whenever the sun makes an appearance in November one must run and catch the rays and as it will be soon be gone 🙂 That particular morning and day were particularly beautiful and skies where a gorgeous blue.

    1. Yes, it’s nice to have a few extra-easy recipes on hand for the kids, as they really like to help and of course lick the bowl afterwards. 🙂 Thank you so much for stopping by Suzanne!

    1. Thank you Gallivanta…and sorry for the incredibly late reply. It is December already. Every once in a while the sun will peak and every time I must take a picture and share with my family on rare of an occasion here in the Nordic during the months of November and December. But yesterday was a day full of sunshine and I enjoyed every minute of it. Today was gray…perfect for blogging 🙂 Take care and happy advent!

      1. Happy Advent to you. As the evening came on in Cairns last week, we lit candles and watched the light fade. It was a peaceful moment with my parents. I thought of your candlelit mornings.

    1. Thank you Karen. Every once in a while when the children do something so funny or creative or smart, I just need to stop and enjoy the moment. There is funny feeling of love that starts from the pit of the stomach and is really quite physical. So much emotion children cause…they can cause us to go into a rage of anger or love…and all because we care so much about them! I’m sure it is all familiar to you 🙂

  1. I love the photos of your kids in the kitchen – it’s always nice when they can do something almost completely by themselves! The cake looks smashing!

  2. Laila, all I can think of is the word “snuggle.” Your entire post was one loving, family SNUGGLE. Thanks for the glimpse of your view, too — pristine and pretty — Happy November!
    P.S. Your pumpkin poking story tickled my heart! 🙂

  3. Great post and photos as always! I know exactly what you mean about equal division of cooking jobs. I only have two kids and can’t imagine how much trickier this task must be for you, especially when it comes to the most important job – spoon licking! It’s mango season here, and I think this is just about the perfect recipe to hand over to my boys. I’m seriously thinking of serving your cake up on Christmas Day Laila (my family is hosting this year)! Will keep you posted.
    Oh, and your Father’s Day brekkie sounds perfect – being a Dutchie by birth, Maasdam is one of my favourites, and thankfully it has become readily available in Melbourne.

    1. Yes, I well imagine you know all about dividing kitchen jobs in a democratic fashion! Hope your boys have a chance to try out the recipe…would love to know how it turned out for them! 🙂 Happy advent to you and yours!

  4. That photograph from your dining room is magnificent! What a view! And I love the salt dough ornaments. They almost look like felt or cookies just waiting for icing. 🙂 What a fun idea!

  5. I love any no bake recipe, but the Mango -lemon cheesecake looks amazingly good. I think my hubby would love this, he loves cheesecake! So great that the kids managed to make it themselves too! You have a beautiful view from your dining room. My view is a close up of the farm close/ yard and steadings!

    1. Sounds like you have an interesting view from your kitchen as well. And yes, the cake is super simple and quick to make…and has helped me out at times when I have been in a pinch for time!

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