Valentine’s Day is coming at us and millions of folks will be rushing out to buy cards, gifts, and chocolate to show their Valentine how much they are loved. And while I’ll never turned down a box of chocolates , I think a homemade gift says ‘I love you’ even better!
This year I had an idea for a raspberry & chocolate tart for Valentine’s Day. Maybe it was the fabulous red dress I was trying on for a shoot at the moment or maybe I was just hungry & my sweet tooth was getting the best of me. Whatever brought on the inspiration, I ran it by my friend, Marcia, our stylist on the Top 20 & a foodie in her own right (she makes great jams & jellies) and she suggested adding marzipan. Great idea! And since I was thinking mini versus typical size, I picked up these adorable 4-inch ‘Made in France’ tart pans at Williams Sonoma (Jo Ann Fabrics and Beth Bath & Beyond also has this size). Next, raspberries, chocolate chips (milk or dark), sliced almonds, almond paste, ready-to-bake pie crust and some other staples that you already have in your pantry (butter, sugar, flour, cornstarch, brown sugar) is all you’ll need.
I found some more French inspiration from Paris blogger/chef David Lebovitz http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2014/07/apricot-and-cherry-tart-recipe-with-marzipan-topping. His marzipan topping is c’est magnifique! I modified the amounts for the single serving pans and it turned out beautifully! I’m always thinking raspberries because they’re Charlie’s favorite, but you can try this with strawberries, cherries, etc. Serve it warm out of the oven with a scoop of ice cream or with some whipped cream and fresh raspberries. Charlie will be in Texas tomorrow playing with artist Jamie O’Neal, so he had his Valentine treat for breakfast this morning and said it was great with morning coffee!
So on the big day of love, tell your sweetheart ‘Je ‘taime beaucoup’ with a delicious raspberry and chocolate tart. I’ll be curled up on the couch with Jerry & Olivia and the 127th viewing of ‘Bridget Jones Diary’. Happy Valentine’s Day!
- 1 ready to bake pie crust for a 9 inch pie
- 2 (6 ounce) packages fresh raspberries
- 2 teaspoons corn starch
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 cup slice almonds
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup chocolate chips (milk or dark chocolate)
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 packed brown sugar
- 1/8 cup almond paste
- 1 drop almond extract
- 2 tablespoons butter, chilled & cubed
- Prepare crust per package instructions.
- With crust rolled out onto flat surface, divide into 6 pieces with each piece being a couple of inches larger in diameter than each tart pan.
- Place a piece of the dough into each pan, pressing down to follow the form of the pan & following it up the sides to the fluted edges.
- Tear off any excess.
- Place tart pans in the refrigerator to chill for about 15 minute in order to minimize shrinkage in the baking process.
- After chilling, pierce each crust several times with a fork and bake according to package directions, being careful not to get too brown as the tarts will need to bake an additional 30 minutes or so.
- Once dough is done, set aside tart pans & allow to cool completely.
- Wash raspberries and allow to drain.
- Mix together corn starch and sugar in a medium bowl.
- Add raspberries to bowl and toss gently.
- Sprinkle almonds on top and toss again, gently.
- In a small mixing bowl, place flour, brown sugar, almond paste, almond extract and butter. Mix together well with a pastry cutter or with your hands until the paste and butter are about the size of corn kernels.
- To the cooled dough, sprinkle chocolate chips to cover the bottom of the dough of each tart pan.
- Pour raspberry mixture evenly on top of the chips.
- Sprinkle the almond paste and butter crumble evenly on top of the raspberry mixture.
- Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the fruit is bubbly hot.
- Serve warm with ice cream or room temperature with whipped cream and fresh raspberries on top.
- This recipe is for six 4-inch individual tart pans. Though tart dough and pie dough are slightly different with tart dough being less flakey and tender to hold its shape when serving with no form underneath, pie dough works great for this as the portion is smaller & holds together just fine. Also, tart dough may be a little sweeter to add to the essence of a typical tart, but I found that the sweetness of the raspberries and the other sugar in this recipe were just right! If you do modify this recipe to incorporate a standard 9 inch tart pan, you should probably consider using tart dough, instead of a pie dough.