White Chocolate Raspberry Tart

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Chef Food & Drink
A decadent tart that is especially easy to make.  The mascarpone gives it a slight bite which makes it seem less rich when you eat it.

1/2 cup (125 ml) whipping cream
1 lb (500 g) white chocolate
1/2 cup (125 ml) mascarpone cheese
2 cups (500 ml) raspberries

One 9-inch (23-cm) prebaked sweet Pastry shell (recipe to follow)

          1/2 cup (125 ml) shaved dark chocolate

Bring cream to a boil in large pot over medium heat.  Remove from heat and stir in white chocolate until melted and smooth.

Stir in mascarpone cheese until mixture is smooth and uniform.

Pack raspberries in a tight layer over base of tart shell.  Pour over chocolate mixture covering berries evenly.  Refrigerate for 3 hours.  Shave dark chocolate over tart, if desired.   Serves 8.

This recipe makes a pastry that is similar to shortbread.  It is used for recipes that call for tart shells that are fully pre-baked and then filled with fresh fruit and custard fillings.
Because of the high fat content, this pastry can be difficult to roll out.  If necessary, pat it into the pan with your fingertips.  The high sugar content means the pastry is baked only until it turns a light golden colour.  If it is baked too long, the sugar will carmelize and the pastry will have a burnt taste.  Sweet pie shells can be made up to 3 days ahead of time and refrigerated until needed.  They also freeze extremely well.

1/2 cup (125 ml) unsalted butter
1.1/2 cups (375 ml) all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp (45 ml) granulated sugar
2 egg yolks
1 Tbsp (15 ml) lemon juice

Preheat oven to 375-F  (190-C)
Cut the butter into 1 inch (2.5 cm) cubes
Combine the flour and sugar in a large bowl.  Cut in butter until it resembles coarse bread crumbs.  Combine egg yolks and lemon juice.  Add to flour mixture and blend well.
Roll out or pat the pastry until 1/8" thick.  Place in a 9 inch flan pan; trim off excess and prick pastry with a fork.  Bake blind (see below) for 15 minutes in the lower third of the oven.  Remove the pie weights.  Bake for a further 5 minutes to partially bake the crust, or another 10 to 15 minutes to fully bake the crust. Makes one 9 or 10 inch single crust.

TO BAKE BLIND:  Line pastry with foil or parchment paper and fill with beans or pie weights.  This ensures an even crust that does not sink down the side of the tart or bake unevenly

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