Little Strawberry Charlotte

Little Strawberry Charlotte

Meet Little Strawberry Charlotte. She understands summer. She knows it’s hot outside and you don’t want to turn on your oven. She knows you don’t need to feed a crowd, because smaller gatherings make more sense in this uncertain world. You’ll gaze at her beauty and sigh. You’ll take one bite and realize that her simple, non-traditional methods made you love her even more.

Print Recipe
Little Strawberry Charlotte
Course Dessert
Keyword cake, strawberry
Servings
Ingredients
Simple Syrup
Strawberry Charlottte
Course Dessert
Keyword cake, strawberry
Servings
Ingredients
Simple Syrup
Strawberry Charlottte
Instructions
Simple Syrup
  1. Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
  2. Heat and stir until sugar is dissolved. Do not boil.
  3. Remove from heat and transfer to a small shallow bowl or dish wide enough to dip ladyfingers. Stir in extract.
Strawberry Charlotte
  1. In a blender or food processor, puree strawberries. Pass through a mesh sieve to strain out seeds.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine strawberry puree and sugar. Cook over medium heat until sugar is dissolved, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  3. Set aside two tablespoons of strawberry puree mixture. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  4. Place water in a small bowl and sprinkle with gelatin powder. Whisk together and let sit until dissolved, about 5 minutes.
  5. Add gelatin mixture to warm strawberry puree and whisk until thoroughly combined. Set aside to cool.
  6. In a large bowl, beat mascarpone cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed, until smooth. Add strawberry puree and and extracts. Beat until well combined.
  7. In a separate large bowl, whip heavy cream with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until medium peaks form. Be careful not to over whip the cream or it will look curdled.
  8. Fold whipped cream into mascarpone mixture.
  9. Optional: Line the bottom of your springform pan with a cake board if you don't want to serve it on the pan base.
  10. Slice the round end off of 16 ladyfingers. Dunk them briefly in the simple syrup then line them up along the inner sides of a 7-inch by 3 inch deep *springform pan. (Typically you would line them smooth side in facing the filling, but I placed mine smooth side out because I wanted a smooth look on the outside and it makes removal from the pan easier.)
  11. Line the bottom snuggly with ladyfingers, cutting to fit where necessary.
  12. Top with half of the filling mixture, about 2 cups. Then top with a layer of ladyfingers, cutting to fit as with the bottom layer.
  13. Top with remaining filling. Smooth the top with a small offset spatula.
  14. Cove with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator at least 4 hours.
  15. Carefully remove the springform pan ring from the base. Separate the base from the cake board, if using. Garnish with fresh strawberries. Brush strawberries with reserved strawberry puree mixture. Tie a clean ribbon around the finished Charlotte.
Recipe Notes

*To find a 7-inch springform pan, click here.

Strawberries & Cream Tarts

Strawberries & Cream Tarts

May is when I get to pull out all of my summery recipes. These pretty little Strawberries & Cream Tarts remind me of a summer day. The kind of day when you’re outside enjoying the sunshine and you’re craving a cool, refreshing dessert. This strawberry cream filling alone is so delicious that I could just eat the entire bowl with a spoon. But since I’m extra, I had to create an aesthetic dessert with it.

I used my favorite tart shells for this recipe, but this would also be delicious with those little pre-made graham cracker pie crusts if you want to take a shortcut. The reason I love this tart crust recipe so much though, is that it actually tastes delicious. Once, a few years ago, I purchased a beautiful, small fruit tart from a famous bakery. The fruit was vibrant and glistening and the pastry cream filling was sweet and silky. Now we need the sound of a mic drop, because the tart crust was hard and flavorless, like cardboard! Ever since then, I knew I would settle for nothing less than a delicious tart crust.

Print Recipe
Strawberries & Cream Tarts
Course Dessert
Keyword strawberry, tarts
Servings
4-inch tarts
Ingredients
Tart Crust
Strawberry Cream Filling
Course Dessert
Keyword strawberry, tarts
Servings
4-inch tarts
Ingredients
Tart Crust
Strawberry Cream Filling
Instructions
Tart Crust
  1. In a bowl, whisk together flour, powdered sugar and salt. Set aside.
  2. Work in butter and egg yolk with a pastry blender or with your fingers, until pea size pieces are formed.
  3. Add ice water, one tablespoon at a time, until dough comes together.
  4. Form dough into a disc. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for one hour.
  5. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness
  6. Cut dough into six 5-inch rounds. Press rounds into six 4-inch or 4 1/4-inch tart pans.*
  7. Dock the bottoms of pie crusts with a fork. Freeze for 30 minutes.
  8. Heat oven to 375ºF. Place tart pans on a large baking sheet.
  9. Line tart shells with six 6-inch parchment rounds. Fill with pie weights. (You can use dried beans or rice if you don't have pie weights.)
  10. Bake tart shells for 12 minutes. Remove parchment paper and pie weights. Continue baking until tart shells are light golden brown, about 4-6 more minutes.
  11. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
Strawberry Cream Filling
  1. Purée strawberries in a blender or small food processor. Pass through a mesh sieve to remove large seeds.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat strawberry purée and sugar over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Transfer to a medium bowl.
  3. Meanwhile, place 3 tablespoons water into a small bowl. Sprinkle gelatin powder over the top of water. Let sit until water is absorbed, about 5 minutes.
  4. Pour gelatin mixture into warm strawberry purée mixture and stir until fully incorporated.
  5. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth.
  6. Add extracts and beat until combined.
  7. Add strawberry purée mixture a little at time and whisk until well combined
  8. In a medium bowl, beat heavy whipping cream with an electric mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form.
  9. Fold whipped cream into strawberry mixture.
  10. Spoon into cooled tart shells. Smooth tops with a small offset spatula. Refrigerate for two hours. Garnish with sliced, fresh strawberries.
Recipe Notes

*To find the tart pans I used, click here.