At times you need desserts which please nearly everyone. When professional pastry chefs make dessert for hundreds of people or a baking enthusiast makes dessert for a party of 10, a dessert is needed which appeals to everyone.
Desserts made with mascarpone cream belong in this class. Nearly everyone likes the sophisticated flavor of mascarpone cheese, making it a perfect choice to use for large groups of people. What is especially nice about mascarpone cream is that it harmonizes excellently with an incredible amount of other flavors. Making it possible for a professional pastry chef to make one batch of mascarpone cream and turn it into a variety of desserts. The baking enthusiast at home can make desserts in a glass by filling verrines (glasses) with mascarpone cream and finish some with one type of coulis and fruit and some with a complete different flavor profile.
For this tart I ordinarily use a hazelnut crust, since I especially like the buttery flavor of the nuts paired with the mascarpone cheese. For some applications I like to add liquors or certain essence to the mascarpone cream to highlight other components in the dessert. However, for this tart, I made the cream aux naturel. The ganache however is complimented with a little cassis or black current liqueur.
Getting it all together!
The hazelnut tart dough can be made weeks in advance if frozen. Defrost the dough overnight in a refrigerator and bake as required. The dough makes double of what you need for one tart, divide the dough in half and prepare one tart ring. Roll the remaining dough about 3 credit cards thick and cut in circles. When baked fill with ganache, lemon curd, crystallized chocolate….The mascarpone cream can be made a week in advance as well and kept in the freezer. Fill one mousse ring with a dimension smaller than the tart ring with the mascarpone cream, about one third full. Fill the rest of the cream in small silicone domes for a decorative element on the surface of the tart. Remove both from the freezer once the tart shell is baked and cooled.
For the red effect, spray the tart with red tinted cocoa butter or use a sieve filled with dehydrated raspberry powder.
Hazelnut tart dough
Yield: Hazelnut tart dough for 2- 8 inch (20 cm) tarts
|2 sticks||(8 oz)||Unsalted butter , soft||240 g|
|1 Cup||(4 oz)||Powdered sugar||120 g|
|½ teaspoon||( ½ tsp)||Salt||2.5 g|
|1 teaspoon||(1 tsp)||Vanilla extract||2.5 ml|
|1 Cup||(4 oz)||Hazelnut flour||120 g|
|2 Cups||(9 oz)||All purpose –pastry flour||270 g|
- In a bowl mix the butter until creamy and smooth. Add the powdered sugar and combine well. Scrape the bowl and add the egg, salt and vanilla extract. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Mix in the hazelnut flour. Add all the flour at once and mix until just combined. Do not overmix.
- Chill the dough until firm. About 30 minutes in the freezer or chill overnight in the refrigerator.
- Roll the dough on a floured surface about 3 credit cards thick.
- Line the tart ring. Prick the dough with a fork and place in a 375°F (180°C) oven. After a few minutes check the tart, if bubbles develop prick the dough. Bake until golden brown. About 15 minutes and let cool.
Ganache with cassis liquor
|¼ cup||(2 oz)||Heavy cream||60 g|
|1 Tbsp||( ½ oz)||Invert sugar||15 g|
|3 oz||(3 oz)||52-54% chocolate, chopped||90 g|
|1 Tbsp||(.5 oz)||Cassis liquor||15 g|
- In a saucepan bring the heavy cream and invert sugar to a boil.
- Place the chocolate in a bowl and add the boiled cream in 5 increments. Stir with a spatula. Add the liquor.
|¾ Cup||(6 oz)||Whipping cream (34-36 %fat)||180 g|
|4||(4)||Large egg yolks||4|
|¼ Cup||(2 oz)||Water||60 g|
|6 Tablespoons||(3 oz)||Extra fine granulated sugar||90 g|
|8 oz||(8 oz)||Mascarpone cheese||240 g|
- Place the gelatin leaves in very cold water and set aside.
- In a cold bowl whisk the whipping cream to very soft ribbon consistency. Absolutely do not whip to a peak! Set aside.
- Fill a saucepan with a small amount of water and bring to a boil and then turn to a low simmer. In a bowl whisk together the egg yolks and measured water. Add the sugar and whisk well. Place the bowl over the simmering water and whisk constantly until the yolk mixture reaches at least 165°F (74°C). Remove from heat.
- Remove the gelatin leaves from the water and squeeze well to remove excess water. Whisk the gelatin into the yolk mixture. Add the mascarpone cheese and vanilla extract and whisk smooth.
- Add the soft whipped heavy cream and gently fold into the above using a spatula. Fill into an oiled and sugared ring mold immediately, about one third to half full. Use the remaining cream for small silicone domes.