BLOOD ORANGE RASPBERRY AND BLACK TAHINI TARTS
When the blood orange season comes around every year, in the winter, my mind goes into a tornado mode of what fun desserts can I make with the prettiest fruits that nature has given us! Blood oranges get me excited! The pretty orange, deep red hues on the outside, and magenta shades on the inside, make me want to squeal with joy, like a little girl in a candy store!
So I have quite a few blood orange desserts up by sleeve this year, and I cannot wait to share them with you! I am particularly excited to share this one, because it was the first time that I was making the pate sable pastry shells, that you see in a Parisian pastry store, or a fancy pastry store, the one you think you can never make, but when you put it together, it gets you so excited, and you want to share it with the world!
When Bob’s Red Mill asked me to partner with them last year, for a yearlong partnership in 2022, trust me, I was SO excited and overcome with joy! I have loved their products for a long time, used their almond flour, unbleached all purpose flour, and even their oat flours and gluten free oats for breakfast dishes! They have a fantastic array of products, right from different kinds of starches and flours as thickening agents, nut flours, grains and grain flours, and also breakfast products such as oatmeal cups and bars!
HISTORY OF BOB’s RED MILL
Bob started Bob’s Red Mill in 1978, when he and his wife Charlee went on a long walk one day in Milwaukie, Oregon, and chanced upon an old red feed mill and that was the beginning of Bob’s Red Mill and their journey towards a successful business.
In Bob’s words “Food is powerful. It breaks down walls and feeds the soul. We know it and we live it. We believe in good food for all”. You can read more about Bob and Charlee’s story here.
The first recipe that I am showcasing and sharing are these mini Blood Orange Raspberry and Black Tahini Tarts. The dessert starts out with a Pâte Sablée base, Black Tahini layer, and then a blood orange and raspberry curd layer, finally topped with an Italian Meringue, that is torched, and with a grande finale garnish of candied blood oranges, freeze dried raspberries and edible gold leaf!
With Valentine’s Day coming up, these mini desserts would make the perfect dessert to share with your loved ones. They are individual sized portions, perfectly sweetened, not too sweet and delicately, beautifully and elegantly decorated.
Pâte Sablée base
Pâte Sablée dough is made with all purpose flour, almond flour, confectioner’s sugar and eggs. You have to weigh out the dough to get the right proportions and texture of the tart shell every time. The shell is not too sweet, it is like a biscuit, and forms the perfect vehicle to carry fillings of your choice.
The dough is easy to make, and you do not need a stand mixer to make it. I love making the dough with my bare hands, because you can feel the dough come together beautifully. You have to massage the dough – a process called frisage (that I learnt when I had taken an extensive pie and tart course ions ago), to get the lovely consistency. You are basically spreading the butter with the process. You use your heel to knead the dough.
I used ground cardamom in my dough to give it a bit of flavor.
Once the dough is made, you have to chill it for a bit so that you can roll it into a perfect layer, between two silicone mats to get an even layer. Trim the sides, which may be thinner than the middle portion of the dough.
The silicone mats that I use are linked here.
The Perforated tart rings that I use are linked here. I have 2 kinds – second one is linked here. You can use whichever one you prefer. I liked them both. They both baked the tarts quite well.
If you want flat bottoms for the tarts, it would be great to use perforated baking mats linked here. You can use the normal silicone baking mat, but you may get a slight concave on the bottom, which is not that bad. Once they come out of the oven, simply use a paper towel and press on the inside of the tart shell.
Once you roll out the dough, you want to work fast through the process of cutting out the rounds, based on the tart ring shape, and cutting out the strips to put around the inside of each tart ring.
What I like to do is divide the pate sable dough into 2. Keep one wrapped in the fridge. Use the other one to roll out, and form the round shapes. The second dough I use to make the strips inside each tart ring.
Both the sheets need to be frozen in the freezer for half an hour. Then bake them in the oven for 30 minutes, until slightly golden brown in color. You want it just slightly golden else the shells will get hardened.
The tart shells can be kept in an airtight container for upto 2-3 days.
Blood Orange and Raspberry Curd
I love blood orange curd. I have been making it for years now, and I love adding floral notes, or other fruity notes to make the color vibrant. Blood orange curd by itself is a very pale orangish-pinkish hue, and is not very attractive.
My cookbook Mumbai Modern has my Blood Orange and Hibiscus Curd Tart with a Gingersnap Crust. The dried hibiscus gives the curd a very pretty color, and floral and tartness to it too. Blood oranges by itself are sweet. They do not have tartness as such. So hibiscus balances it really well.
Here, I have used fresh raspberries to the blood orange, to give the curd flavor and color. It enhances the fruitiness, and tartness and gives it a pretty color too. I do add a drop of pink food coloring to make it a pretty pink.
The ingredients of the blood orange and raspberry curd are pretty simple:
- Blood Orange Juice and zest(zest has a lot of flavor that should not be dismissed!)
- Pureed raspberries(that I puree with the blood orange juice to give it even consistency)
- Lemon juice
- Whole eggs
- Egg yolks
- Granulated sugar
- Unsalted butter
- Pinch of salt
The curd is very simple to put together. It is amazing on pretty much ANYTHING. Think toasts, waffles, pancakes, filling for cookies, macarons, or eat it just AS IS!
I think this is my new favorite combination – blood orange and raspberries!!! This tart is ADDICTIVE AS HELL! You will not stop licking it!
The most important tip for curd is, that do NOT taste it right away. You have to wait for it to cool down, and make sure that the plastic wrap is on top of the curd, so as not to form a film. Make sure that the curd is in the fridge to cool down and set as well. That is an important step too.
Black Tahini Paste:
There is something about black sesame and citrus, that is a fantastic combination. I LOVE this pairing.
The black tahini that I bought is linked here. The brand is PURE black sesame seed paste. No additives, no sugar added, thus you can control the amount of sugar going into my black tahini paste for the tart. I simply add confectioner’s sugar to the black tahini, mix it well with a rubber spatula, and immediately spoon it into all the tarts so that it does not harden.
The tarts are really simple to put together. All you are doing is baking the tart shells.
Layer ½ a tablespoon of the black tahini paste into the tart shell. Add a blood orange and raspberry curd layer uptil the top of the tart. Now set them all in the fridge for a couple of hours to set.
Then we go ahead with the decoration of the Italian Meringue piping and adding candied blood oranges(optional), and other fixings!
If you do want to make the Candied Blood Oranges, you can find the recipe here.
I have to admit, and be honest here. I was afraid to make Italian meringue. The thought of making a hot sugar syrup first, and then whisking at fast speed into the egg whites to make a meringue, scared me. But then I thought, I have made marshmallows in a similar fashion, except you have corn syrup in the hot sugar syrup, that you pour into egg whites as well. This is NO different!
I love the way Stella Parks explains it in this Serious Eats article, and that it is easy to control the ratio of the Italian Meringue. It is all about the ratio. So I used a ratio that worked for the quantity I wanted to make for the tarts. I always make extra, to practice the piping before I pipe it onto the tarts. This helps me to gauge the pressure I need to put on the piping, steadiness, and preciseness.
Italian Meringue is very light, and the pressure required to pipe it is very little. It does not take much to pipe out a beautiful pattern.
All the information about accuracy in recipe, and piping tip used is in the RECIPE BELOW.
I am in love with these tarts and the flavor. I loved decorating them with Candied Blood Oranges, and freeze dried raspberries, and edible gold leaf to make them elegant and pretty. I love exploring making the tart shells and how perfect they turned out.
This dessert screams elegance, finesse and love, perfect for Valentine’s Day. I hope you get a chance to make this tart for your loved ones. The recipe makes 12 tarts and you can distribute it amongst your friends and family for a special treat.
IF you do make them, please do not forget to tag #thejamlab on Instagram and/or leave me a comment on this blog post!
Love and hugs,
This blog post is sponsored by Bob’s Red Mill. All opinions expressed are my own.
Petit Blood Orange Raspberry and Black Tahini Tarts
- Makes 12 4 inch tarts
- Pate Sable Tart Shell:
- 300g Bob’s Red Mill Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
- 40g Bob’s Red Mill Almond Flour
- 150g confectioner’s sugar
- ½ tsp ground cardamom
- ¼ tsp salt
- 150 unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- 70g beaten eggs
- Blood Orange and Raspberry Curd:
- 130g blood orange juice (Juice of about 3 blood oranges)
- ½ cup (50 g) lemon juice
- 60g raspberries
- ¾ cup (150g) granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp blood orange zest
- ½ tsp salt
- 3 whole eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 stick (113g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- A drop of edible pink color(I used Americolor gel)
- Black Sesame Paste:
- ½ cup (120g) black tahini paste
- 30g confectioner’s sugar
- Italian meringue:
- 80g egg whites, room temperature
- 160g granulated sugar
- 6 tbsp water
- A drop of edible pink color(I used Americolor gel)
- Candied blood orange slices (optional)
- Freeze dried raspberries
- Edible gold leaf
- Italian meringue (Recipe in the method)
- 2 silicone mats
- 2 perforated silicone mats (you can use silicone mats if you do not have perforated)
- 12x 4 inch perforated tart rings
- Rolling pin
- Small offset Spatula
- Sharp knife
- 2x 12 inch piping bags
- Size 2 or 3 french tip
- Ruffle Wilton tip #86
- Blow torch
- Pate Sable Tart Shell:
- In a medium bowl, add the all purpose flour, almond flour, confectioner’s sugar, ground cardamom, salt. Whisk to combine.
- Add the cubed and cold unsalted butter into the mixture and with your hands mix and break down the butter, until the mixture resembles sand. The butter should be blended with the flour. When you crumble the mixture in your hand and close your fist it should form a shape.
- Add the eggs at this stage, and mix it well with your hands, until it is combined well and no flour mixture can be seen.
- On a clean work surface, knead the dough with the heel of your hands, and bring it back to form a ball. Repeat the process for 2 minutes. This process is called fraisage in French, which means to blend the dough.
- Store the dough in a plastic wrap, shape it into a rectangle of 5x6 inches approx. Store it in the fridge for an hour.
- Remove the dough, and the plastic wrap. Divide the dough into half. Place the other half in the fridge. Place it between 2 silicone mats, and using a rolling pin, start rolling the dough, until it is 2mm thick. Make sure the middle of the dough is rolled out, else you can sometimes have the middle of the dough thicker than the edges. The dough will mostly stretch the entire length and width of the silicone mat, shy by 1 or 2 inches all around. You want to ensure an even layer throughout. Trim the edges by ½ inch which are thinner than the middle.
- You have to work quickly through the next steps, else the dough may tend to get soft. If you feel the dough is a bit hard to work with, place the dough, in between the 2 silicone mats into the freezer for 5 minutes.
- Place the third and fourth silicone mat, on 2 baking trays.
- Using one of the silicone rings, cut out circles. Using the offset spatula, remove each disc and place it into the silicone ring - 6 silicone rings per baking tray.
- Take the dough scraps, wrap it in the plastic wrap, form a disc and place it in the fridge (if extra dough is required).
- Remove the other dough from the fridge. Repeat step #6.
- Cut out 8 inch long, 1 inch wide strips, 12 in count. Using an offset spatula, take each strip and place it inside the perforated ring. Gently adhere it to the side of the ring, all around. Repeat for all 12 rings.
- Place the baking trays in the freezer for half an hour.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 325 degrees C.
- Remove the trays from the freezer. Using a sharp knife, remove any overhang of the dough from each tart ring, to form a clean ring of dough in each tart ring.
- Place both baking trays in the middle and bottom rack of the oven for 25-30 minutes, until slightly golden brown in color. Switch the trays half way through for even browning of the tarts.
- Remove from the oven, let cool for 10 minutes. Gently remove each tart ring from the baked tart shells. Let rest.
- You can store the tart shells in a cool, airtight container, for upto 3-4 days.
- Blood Orange and Raspberry Curd:
- 1. In a high speed blender, add the raspberries, and blood orange juice. Puree the mixture until smooth. Add the lemon juice. Strain the mixture to get a smooth output.
- 2. In a medium saucepan on medium to low heat, combine the strained mixture, granulated sugar, salt, whole eggs, egg yolks and whisk continuously, constantly cleaning the sides and corners, to gather up the bits, until the mixture thickens, about 8 to 10 minutes. You know it is done when you dip a wooden spoon in the curd and run your finger on the back of the spoon. You want to leave a clean line and the sides should not run.
- 2. Immediately strain the mixture through a sieve over a medium bowl. Once strained, stir in the butter pieces and keep stirring until the curd is well blended and smooth. Add a drop or two of edible pink food color/gel to get the pretty pinkish hue. Cover with plastic wrap applied directly to the surface and let cool for 30 minutes. Place it in the fridge to firm for atleast 3-4 hours.
- Black Tahini Paste:
- In a medium bowl, add the black tahini, and confectioner’s sugar. Mix thoroughly with a rubber spatula, until the mixture is smooth.
- Add about 2 tsp of black sesame paste or black tahini paste into each tart shell. Shake it for it to spread. You can also use a spatula to nudge it all around to form a layer.
- Repeat the process for all the tart shells.
- Remove the blood orange raspberry curd tart from the fridge. Add about 2 tbsp of the curd in each tart shell. Shoosh it for the curd to spread. It should fill up the cavity.
- Repeat the process for all the tart shells.
- Place them on a baking tray and put them to set in the fridge for 2 hours.
- Italian Meringue:
- In a medium saucepan, on medium to high heat add the sugar and water. Let the sugar melt completely.
- Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer, with a whisk attachment, add the room temperature egg whites, and ⅛ tsp cream of tartar. Start whisking at low, gradually increasing to high, and whisk for about 2-3 minutes, until the mixture is foamy.
- The sugar and water mixture will start boiling. Let it boil for about 5 minutes and start noting the temperature using a candy thermometer. The temperature should reach 240 degrees F. It takes about 10 minutes for the temperature to reach the final destination.
- While whisking the egg whites again at low speed, slowly pour in the hot liquid into the stand mixer bowl.
- Once all poured, increase the whisking to high, and whisk until you get soft peaks, about 2-4 minutes. Keep a check to see when the soft peaks are formed. You want them to be stiff yet gentle.
- Use 2 pastry bags, one with the french star tip and the other with the ruffle tip.
- Put one pastry bag with the ruffle tip, in a tall glass for leverage, and open up the plastic as wide as possible.
- Add half of the meringue into the plastic bag. Remove from the glass. Push it down gently with a bench scraper. Keep it aside.
- Now add a drop of pink food gel into the remaining meringue. Using a rubber spatula, gently swirl it to mix. Do not over mix else it will deflate.
- Put the other pastry bag with the french star tip, in a tall glass for leverage, and open up the plastic as wide as possible.
- Add the remaining meringue into the plastic bag. Remove from the glass. Push it down gently with a bench scraper. Keep it aside.
- Gently using the ruffle tip, pipe a pretty ruffle zig zag pattern in the middle of the tart, with the wide opening as the base.
- Pipe with the french tip around the tart. Use your imagination.
- Blow torch the meringue.
- Sprinkle some freeze dried raspberry on the top.
- Decorate with candied blood oranges, or simply thin slices of blood orange segments, and edible gold leaf
- Can be stored in the fridge for upto a week. Keep out for 15-20 minutes before serving.