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Blackberry Tartlets with Vanilla-Flavored Mascarpone Cream


Yields four 4-1/2-inch tartlets

  • by from Excerpted from LA TARTINE GOURMANDE by Beatrice Peltre, ©2012. Published by arrangement with Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications, Inc.,

There are beautiful-looking desserts that take a lot of time to prepare and others that don'tlike these tartlets, which are prepared in a snap and look outstanding. Prepare the crust, mascarpone cream, and fruit stewed in syrup ahead of time. Then assemble the dessert at the last minute, when you're ready to serve, so it's as fresh as can be.

For the tartlet shells:
  • 1/3 cup (1-3/4 oz.) amaranth flour
  • 1/3 cup (1-1/2 oz.) millet flour
  • 1/3 cup (1 oz.) quinoa flakes
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1-1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
  • 1 vanilla bean, split open and seeds scraped out
  • 2 Tbs. blond cane sugar
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 6 Tbs. (3 oz.) unsalted butter, chilled and diced
  • 1 small egg
  • 2 to 3 Tbs. cold water
For the light syrup and blackberries:
  • 2 Tbs. water
  • 1/4 cup (1-3/4 oz.) blond cane sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split open and seeds scraped out
  • 1 lb. fresh blackberries
For the topping:
  • 9 oz. mascarpone cheese
  • 4 Tbs. blond cane sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split open and seeds scraped out
  • 1/2 cup cold heavy cream
Make the tartlet shells:

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle blade, combine the flours, quinoa flakes, cornstarch, xanthan gum, vanilla seeds, sugar, and sea salt. Add the butter and beat on medium speed until crumbles form. Add the egg and continue to beat until in corporated. Gradually add the water while beating until the dough detaches from the bowl and forms a ball. Divide the dough into 6 equal-size balls and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour before using. If it's in the fridge for a few hours or overnight, take out of the fridge at least 30 minutes before using.     

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Roll and cut 4 of the balls of dough to fit inside the tartlet molds (you'll have 2 remaining to save for another use). Arrange the dough inside each mold and using a fork, make small holes at the bottom. Cover each crust with a piece of parchment paper and top it with pie weights (dry rice or beans work too). Prebake the crusts for 12 minutes. Remove the parchment paper and weights, and continue to bake for 5 minutes, watching carefully to make sure that the crusts do not brown too quickly. Unmold and let them cool on a rack.

Make the light syrup:

In a small pot, combine the sugar, water, and vanilla bean and seeds and place over low heat. Heat, stirring gently, until the sugar dissolves. Add the blackberries and simmer for 4 minutes, or until the syrup colors from the fruit stewing in it. Remove from the heat and leave the blackberries to cool in the syrup.

Make the topping:

In a bowl, beat the mascarpone with the sugar and vanilla seeds. In a separate bowl, beat the heavy cream with an electric mixer until it forms soft peaks. Fold it gently into the mascarpone mixture.

Assemble the tartlets:

Just before you’re ready to serve, assemble the tartlets by spreading the cream into the crusts. Top with the cooked blackberries and drizzle with syrup. Serve immediately.

Photo: Béatrice Peltre

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