I made this ricotta tart using a Melissa Clark recipe over Memorial Day weekend for my family, to much fanfare. My brother said it was one of the “better desserts” he’s ever had in his life, which I was very happy to hear! It was rather easy to make and once I put the berries on top, it looked very impressive if I do say so myself (but with very little effort). I think it was so popular because it wasn’t too sweet, and also because it had a very unique texture and taste – almost like a lighter, smoother version of cheesecake. I also thought it was reminiscent of rice pudding, which is my favorite thing in the world. This dessert was a big winner in every way – Melissa Clark just never misses! Her recipes are the only ones that I make over and over (examples: the olive oil granola and this delicious, quick pasta dish). Read on to get the recipe!
OMG the filling is so yummy (taste it raw at your own peril ’cause it has raw eggs in it…but know that my Grandma p’shawed at that and tasted it raw anyway…she’s a badass 🙂
Ricotta Tart with Summer Fruit
(very slightly adapted from Melissa Clark)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup blanched sliced almonds
1/3 cup confectioners sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, cold and cubed
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup mascarpone
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon (I think this could be increased, as I couldn’t taste it much in the final product)
1 3/4 cups ricotta
1 large egg
1 egg white
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Prepare the tart crust. Pour 1/4 cup of the flour and all of the almonds into food processor and process until nuts are finely ground (about one minute). Add the rest of the flour, the sugar, the lemon zest, and salt, and pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until a coarse mixture is formed. Add the egg and pulse just until a crumbly dough comes together. Then turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap, form it into a disk, and chill for an hour wrapped in plastic.
After at least an hour, press the dough into a 9 inch tart pan. You can also first roll it out between two sheets of plastic to make it more moldable. Put the tart pan with the pressed dough back into the fridge to chill for another half hour. After that, line the pan with tinfoil, fill with baking weights or dry beans, and bake at 325 for 20 minutes. Then carefully remove the tinfoil and baking weights and continue baking, uncovered, for 15 minutes or until light golden in color.
Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix together the mascarpone, sugar, and cinnamon. Beat together until fluffy and light, about two minutes. Add ricotta, egg plus egg white, honey, vanilla, and salt, and mix to combine. Pour the filling into the baked shell (doesn’t matter if the shell is still hot). Place back in oven and bake for 20-30 minutes, until the filling is mostly set but still slightly wobbly in the middle. Before serving, top with a pile of your favorite berries.
photos by me