Key Lime Greek Yogurt Mascarpone Tart

I have a key lime obsession.

Regular lime is great, but key lime has just a lil extra somethin' somethin'. An extra almost ~creaminess~ to it. Key Lime Pie has always been one of my favourite desserts. 

So when there was a damn two-day long ice storm in April, and I saw key limes at the grocery store, I grabbed them instantly. It was time to add a little extra comfort and brightness into the kitchen.

The greek yogurt brings a nice smooth tartness, and the mascarpone is a super creamy and lightly sweet. Plus the limes and some honey to round out the flavours, this is an all around win. I like to keep a less-sweet cream that really compliments the sweet crust. 

key lime greek yogurt mascarpone tart

Sweet Crust:

This recipe is enough for 2-3, 8” tarts. If making a single tart, you’ll have some left over but this freezes incredibly well for up to 6 months. I usually make a double batch and freeze it for whenever the occasion arises! Pull it out a day or two before you want to use it, and keep it in the fridge. Or let it warm up on the counter (but not too much, you still want it to be cool when you work with it).

150g sugar
250g shortening at room
4g salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
60ml milk
435g pastry flour, sifted

  • Cream together the sugar, flavours and shortening until light and fluffy. 
  • Add the milk to the shortening, mixing on high speed until fully incorporated.
  • Add the egg to the shortening and scrape down the bowl
  • Add the sifted flour into the mixture gradually and blend until smooth
  • Transfer the dough onto a floured surface and knead into a short log shape, then chill in the fridge until use
  • When chilled, roll the dough out without making it too thin, and place it in the tart pan. Make sure to gently press the dough into the edges, and then trim the top
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes at 375F until lightly golden

 

Key Lime Cream:

60ml whipping cream, whipped
3 TBS honey
10 key limes
225g full-fat greek yogurt
225g mascarpone

  • Zest 5 limes and juice all 10 limes
  • Mix everything together until smooth
  • Yup, that’s it
  • Taste it and adjust to your preference.

Assembly

Dark Chocolate

  • Once your crust has cooled completely, melt down dark chocolate and brush it onto the tart shell and let it harden. This is important to prevent the crust from getting soggy, and the dark chocolate is amazing in this recipe anyway. So don’t skip it.
  • When the chocolate is fully hardened (important!!!!), smooth the key lime cream into the shell
key lime greek yogurt mascarpone tart

Now, go make this!

Boozy Black Forest Cake

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This cake is a real treat.

The rich but light chocolate cake lends itself well to the sweet cherries and airy whip cream. The dark chocolate adds a layer of bitterness to all the sweetness. And the chocolate sprinkles add extra texture and crunch. (They aren't rainbow sprinkles, but we'll make an exception this time). With a little Kirsch between the layers, we're doing okay!

 

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Ingredients (Cake Batter):

  • 235g sugar
  • 80g butter
  • 5g salt
  • 160g pastry flour
  • 45g cocoa powder
  • 2.5g baking soda
  • 5g baking powder
  • 160ml water
  • 5g vanilla
  • 3 eggs

Ingredients (Filling):

  • 300g cherries (reserve the juices)
  • 1L whipping cream
  • 80g sugar
  • 5g Vanilla

Decorating:

  • 150g dark chocolate shavings
  • Chocolate sprinkles
  • Kirsch

Steps (Cake):

  • Set oven to 350F
  • Cream the butter, sugar and salt. Scrape down the bowl
  • Sift the remaining dry ingredients together, and add to the butter/sugar mixture. Pour the water over top
  • Mix on medium speed for 5 minutes. Stop to scrape down the bowl, and mix again for another minute
  • Add the eggs and vanilla, then mix on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape down, then mix on high speed for one minute. The batter should resemble a light chocolate mousse.
  • Add batter to a well greased 9" cake pan. Smooth with an offset Spatula. Bake for 30-40 minutes until a toothpick comes out moist but not wet.

Steps (Filling and Masking):

  • Whip cream, vanilla and sugar into stiff peaks. Set aside
  • Once fully cool, but the cake into three layers. Brush each layer with cherry juice and Kirsch (adjust juice to booze ratio as you see fit)
  • Cover the first layer with a thin layer of cream. Pipe a rim of cream around the edges, and fill inside with cherries. Repeat for the next layer.
  • Once all three layers are in place, mask the entire cake with the whip cream
  • Cover the sides of the cake with the chocolate sprinkles
  • Pipe rosettes on the top of the cake, and top with amarena cherries
  • Pile the chocolate shavings into the centre of the cake
black forest cake-4.jpg

Lavender Shortbread

I remember as a kid my mom's obsession with lavender. She would always lather on lavender hand cream, or stuff pockets of lavender into our underwear drawers. Every year at the CNE, she would visit the same booth to pick up more dried lavender. She would grab a few lavender flowers from the tester and carry it around in her hands. She'd shove our noses into it, "I just love the smell of lavender!". We used to make fun of her lavender obsession.

Well, now I'm an adult and have a lavender obsession of my own. We become our mothers, do we not??

My first taste of it was in a lavender flavoured ice cream from a little organic shop. I didn't know what to make of it. It was kind of nice, kind of like eating potpourri?? But my sister Diana loved it, and would get it often. Like a true "big sister", I had to try it every time for quality control. Lo ad behold, it grew on me.

My sister made these cookies, adapted from the Five Roses cookbook (published before the bible probably). They were the perfect balance of sweet, crumbly, and floral. 

lavender shortbread

Lavender can be a lot. The flavour is strong, so start with a small amount.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon lavender flowers

Steps:

Preheat oven to 350F. Gently whip butter, and stir in sugar, salt and egg yolk until just incorporated. Add the flour a little bit at a time until the mixture is stiff, throwing in the lavender flowers at the very end.

Turn the dough onto a floured counter and knead with extra flour just until the mix begins to crack. Roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into shapes and bake for 10 minutes until slightly golden.

lavender shortbread

Chocolate, Espresso & Sea Salt Caramel

Chocolate. Espresso. Sea Salt. 

Name a better trio. I'll wait.

sea salt chocolate espresso caramel

These little guys are so addictive. My boyfriend loved them. I was the best girlfriend ever. Until he got a particularly salty bite. Then I was "trying to kill him". Beware of liberal sea salting!

This recipe is one I got from the Bake from Scratch magazine. It is amazing, and if you cut these into small pieces, it makes a huge batch. I got over 200. You can but shouldn't eat these by yourself. They're perfect for portioning out as gifts. On the other hand, they DID keep really, really well for weeks....

I wrapped mine in parchment paper and fish n chip paper. So ~artsy~.

Be sure to use a really great dark chocolate here and don't compromise. It's worth it.

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup (113g) 70% dark chocolate
  • 1 cup + 2 TBS (270g) heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup + 1 TBS (135g) condensed milk
  • 1 cup (200g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (140g) regular corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup (140g) light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup (60g) water
  • 1/4 cup (57g) unsalted butter softened
  • 1 TBS (6g) espresso powder
  • 1/2 TBS (9g) vanilla
  • Maldon sea salt as needed

Steps:

  • Line a 9"x13" baking pan with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray
  • Cut the chocolate into large chunks and place in a medium sized bowl
  • In a small saucepan, heat your the cream and condensed milk. Once warm, pour it over the chocolate
  • In a medium saucepan, add the sugar, syrups and water. Start on low heat and raise the temperature up the mix to 240F
  • Remove sugar mixture from heat and stir in the cream/chocolate mixture and vanilla
  • Add back to the heat and bring the mix back up to 240F, stirring constantly
  • Remove from heat and stir in butter and espresso
  • Pour mixture into prepared baking pan. After 5 minutes, sprinkle with sea salt
  • Cover the pan with plastic and let it sit overnight. Then cut it into desired sizes and wrap!
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