Saturday, June 18, 2011

Raspberry Mascarpone Cream Tart

The things I can get done on a Saturday morning before my younger brother Kyle even lifts his head off the pillow:
  • eat breakfast,
  • practice driving to a supermarket,
  • shop at said supermarket for two hours,
  • bake a tart shell and whip up the filling for my Raspberry Mascarpone Cream Tart,
  • bake Blueberry Blondies, and
  • eat lunch.
I’m a do-er. I like doing things, being on the move, and being busy. In that respect, I am as different as can be from my two brothers. Waking up earlier to do these things is a bit tiring, but I like that feeling of accomplishment. If only I could have used harnessed this energy two days ago to study for my science exam...

There’s no point looking into the past when the future is here. With all my exams over, I’m off the hook. I can do whatever I want whenever I want, for a little while anyways. I feel liberated, not tied down to school. Yet, this week seems to be even busier than ever. Meetings, celebrations, dinners, and other things that I have to do are piling up this weekend.

For those who forgot, tomorrow is Father’s Day, another holiday that I use as an excuse to bake a day. Unfortunately, my dad is going to be away for Father’s Day, so I decided to make him the Raspberry Mascarpone Cream Tart a day in advance.

My tart is loosely based on a fruit tart that I had seen on Annie’s Eats. I’m still looking for a go-to shortbread pie crust, so I decided to give Annie’s recipe a try. It was a pain to work with; it kept tearing and melting and sticking onto my marble board. In the end, I just slapped it in the pie tart and pressed in all the holes with extra pie crust. I’m not sure why the dough was so difficult to work with, but the crust tasted amazing. It was buttery and flaky and tender. The recipe also made enough dough for three extra mini tarts, which are the perfect size to give away to best friends named Jenny who still has exams this week.

The filling and fruit topping was inspired by the tub of mascarpone cheese in the refrigerator and the raspberries were on sale at the supermarket. At the last minute, I grated some lemon zest into the cream, to give it a light, lemon-y kick. The cream worked really well with the raspberries and I suspect that it would work well with any other berries or stone fruits.

Happy Father’s Day!

Click below for the recipe.

Raspberry Mascarpone Cream Tart

The crust was very difficult to work with, even though I chilled it for the appropriate amount of time. However, it tastes so darn good that I would use it again. I suggest to skip the chilling period and rolling it out and just pressing the dough into your tart shell.


For the tart dough:

  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 3 tablespoons half and half
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ teaspon salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 sitck) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

For the filling:

  • ¾ cup mascarpone cheese
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest, finely grated
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 2 pints raspberries, washed and dried

To make the tart shell, whisk together the egg yolk, cream and vanilla in a small bowl; set aside. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Cut the butter into the flour using a knife until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the egg mixture and stir until the dough just comes together. Turn the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and press into a 6-inch dish. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 48 hours.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Unwrap and roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a 13-inch round. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch tart pan. Run your rolling pin over the top of the tart pan to remove the excess dough. Set the dough-lined tart pan on a large plate and freeze for 30 minutes (I froze it overnight).

Meanwhile, adjust an oven rack to middle position. Preheat the oven to 375° F. Set the dough-lined tart pan on a baking sheet, press a 12-inch square of foil into the frozen shell and over the edge, and fill with pie weights. Bake for 30 minutes, rotating halfway through the baking time. Remove from the oven and carefully remove the foil and weights. Continue to bake until deep golden brown, 5-8 minutes longer. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before filling. 

For the mascarpone cream, combine all ingredients except for the raspberries in a large bowl. Beat with a handheld electric mixer until medium peaks form. Spoon the cream into the cooled tart shell and spread the cream using an angled spatula. Arrange the raspberries over top. Keep chilled until serving time.

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