Tag Archives: raspberries

Coeur a la Creme

I had a dream one night that I was flying through clouds made of whipped cream. It reminded me of those old commercials where the angels sat on clouds and ate cream cheese, flavoring some of it with strawberries or blueberries.

A coeur a la creme is a dreamy pillow of whipped cream cheese, heavy cream, powdered sugar, vanilla bean and lemon zest. The consistency is so airy that it feels like eating the top of an ice cream sundae, but it is dense enough to form the beautiful heart shape you see below.

I like mine framed by a moat of raspberry sauce spiked with Gran Marnier.

This recipe is a bit of a story. I have wanted to make it for years, after seeing it on Barefoot Contessa. I decided to make it this year for Valentine’s Day, which required I put the special dish on hold at Sur la Table. When I finally made it, I forgot to buy heavy cream and tried half/half, which didn’t have the milk fat needed to make it fluff together. So I threw that whole batch out (wah).

I got it right the second time – just watch your Gran Marnier, that stuff gets strong!

Coeur a la Creme with Raspberry Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups cold heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • Seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean
  • Raspberry Sauce, recipe follows
  • 2 half-pints fresh raspberries

Place the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on high speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the beater and bowl with a rubber spatula and change the beater for the whisk attachment. With the mixer on low speed, add the heavy cream, vanilla, lemon zest, and vanilla bean seeds and beat on high speed until the mixture is very thick, like whipped cream (about 5 min.).

Line a coeur a la creme dish (or 7-inch sieve) with cheesecloth (or paper towels) so the ends drape over the sides and place it on something to catch the liquid (if using a sieve, suspend it over a bowl, making sure that there is space between the bottom of the dish and the bottom of the bowl for the liquid to drain). Pour the cream mixture into the cheesecloth (I doubled my cheesecloth layer), fold the ends over the top, and refrigerate overnight. Mine drained just a few drops of liquid, so don’t expect a flood.

You’ll love the way the cheesecloth leaves an impression on the surface:

Now, make the raspberry sauce:

  • 1 half-pint fresh raspberries
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 2 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur (Grand Marnier)

Place raspberries, sugar, and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 4 minutes. Pour the cooked raspberries, the jam, and liqueur into a food processor or blender and process until smooth. Chill.

To serve, unmold the coeur a la creme onto a plate and spoon sauce around the edges. Tumble raspberries all around and dig in!

I honestly can’t have more than one or two spoonfuls at a time – it is very rich. This would be PERFECT for a spring or summer dinner party because it makes so much and is so cool and soft to eat.

Enjoy, friends! xoxo

Peach melba spoom

Peach and raspberry frozen meringue

I haven’t been an avid ice-cream maker this summer – all the steps for making the curd, all the chilling and mixing and chilling again, then straining and chilling – it can be exhausting, albeit gratifying. So I’m looking for simpler ways to get the indulgence of ice cream, but without the work.

A recent Martha Stewart recipe for peach melba spoom caught my attention. What the heck is a spoom? Essentially, it is a cross between a sorbet and a frozen meringue. Made with NO CREAM, and just two egg whites instead of egg, it is light and airy and full of tart fruity flavor. Berries and peaches are beautiful right now, but you can make this with any fruit, really.

Martha’s Peach Melba Spoom

  • 1/2 c. water
  • 1/2 c. plus 1/3 c. sugar
  • 5 peaches, halved, pitted
  • 12 oz. raspberries
  • 2 large egg whites

Bring water and 1/2 c. sugar to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Let cool in fridge. Now you have simple syrup!

Slice and puree three peaches with half the raspberries and 1/4 c. chilled simple syrup – you can do this in a food processor or blender. Add more syrup to taste (I used almost all of it). Pass mixture through fine sieve and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (a rubber spatula will help force the liquid out).

Place egg whites and remaining 1/3 c. sugar in heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Using a hand-held mixer, whisk until sugar dissolves and mixture is hot to the touch, 2 min. Remove from heat. Whisk at high speed now until glossy peaks form, about 5 min.

Gently fold fruit puree into whites. Freeze in an ice cream mixer according to manufacturer’s instructions (for my Cuisinart, it took about 25 min. to get thick enough). Transfer to a container, seal and freeze for at least an hour.

To serve, layer sliced peaches and raspberries with the spoom in pretty glasses.

Each person I serve this to remarks on how surprisingly delicious it is. Strongly flavored with fruit, tart-yet-sweet and with an airy texture. And serving it with the fresh fruit is an added texture that works really well.

This is a wonderful dessert if you are serving someone who can’t eat a lot of dairy (you know who you are!). Guaranteed success.

Enjoy, friends! xoxo