Thursday, October 8, 2009

Ricotta Tart (with a chocolate crust)

Posted by Quinn at Thursday, October 08, 2009

I'm blogging from my university right now. Though exam is over, I stil have 3 more papers to go and one 40% assignment due tomorrow, which is sorta self-explanatory why I am still here.

Nonetheless, I still find some spare time to slot this in. Ricotta cheese is sheep's cheese, infact, it is no exactlt a type fo cheese. What's important is that it is an acquired taste and I definitely prefer ricotta in my savoury dishes rather than in a sweet citrus cheese like this.

Friends think I'm weird and aim too high. Aaron and fellow classmates like it. They say it's nice but I just don't quite like the aftertaste, it's a little grainy even though I use smooth ricotta cheese and run a hand-held blender through it for 30seconds or so.

I like the crust though. It is a very similar crust just like the Not Quite London Cheesecake that I've made sometime back. Aaron got all hyped and insisted me to blog about this as soon as possible. Simply because he thinks the picture above looks as if teh ricotta slice is floating in the air. Actual fact is, there is a serrated knife hidden right underneath the tart. And yes, this is the new 8'' tart tin with false bottom that I bough from Baking Frenzy too! Absolutely loving it. I know people, I bought a 17cm round chiffon tin before this. The fact is, I've made chiffon thrice and have yet to achieve the texture that I want to. Gimme a few more tries and I'll succeed!

As for now, I'll leave you all to think whether you would want to try this Ricotta Tart by Tessa Kiros. She usually never fail me, but this time I really think it's not that awesome (DON'T QUOTE ME!), it's a little over-rated if you google up 'Ricotta Tart Tessa Kiros' and see what others have to say about it. Again, maybe it's just purely me and my love-hate relationship with ricotta.

Ricotta Tart (with a chocolate crust), serves 8 to 10 adapted from Falling Cloudberries by Tessa Kiros

"This is a typical southern combination of flavors: ricotta, the burstingly ripe oranges and, every Italian’s obsession, chocolate. It is quite simple to make." Quoted from Tessa Kiros

For the pastry:

7 tablespoons butter, slightly softened 1/3 cup superfine sugar 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 egg, beaten

For the filling:
3 eggs,beaten 2/3 cup superfine sugar 1 heaped teaspoon finely grated orange zest 3 cups smooth ricotta cheese 1 tablespoon lemon juice 2 tablespoons orange juice

Don't be intimidated by the thought of the pastry crust. If it seems too soft, just add more flour as you’re rolling it, then lift it over your rolling pin and gently lower it into the pan. If it breaks, just patchwork it in.

To make the pastry base, use a food processor to mix together the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Sift in the flour and cocoa and then beat in the egg to make a nice soft pastry. Scrape out onto plastic wrap, flatten into a disc and wrap up. Refrigerate for about an hour.
Preheat your oven to 175°C. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured work surface until large enough to line a 9 1/2-inch removable-bottomed tart pan or springform cake pan with high sides. Line the pastry with parchment paper and baking beans or uncooked rice and bake for about 20 minutes. Remove the paper and beans and bake for a further 5 minutes to slightly dry the base.

For the filling, whisk together the eggs and sugar until thick and creamy. Whisk in the orange rind and ricotta until smooth. Whisk in the lemon and orange juice and scrape into your pastry case. Bake for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until the top seems set and is lightly golden here and there. Cool before cutting into portions. This can be served slightly warm, at room temperature or even cold from the refrigerator.

I quite like it that in the book, Tessa has a picture of the cheesecake baked in a springform pan, just like you would do to a normal cheesecake. The edges looked rustic, messay and yummy which was what attracted me to try this out so badly! Like ricotta? Shoot this!

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