Friday, July 3, 2009
Jeff took me on a surprise random trip to San Francisco!
Okay, okay, so it was my idea. I love going berry picking, and I went last year (resulting in boysenberry cupcakes and olallieberry jam, neither of which I blogged about), but this year between my job and Jeff's job (and cruise) there just wasn't a lot of time. So we were on my way back to my apartment from his when I said, how long would it take us to get to San Fran from here?
And then we went. We didn't have a place to stay, so we slept in his car. We just had breakfast and we didn't get to see any of our friends, but we did get to go berry picking. Boysenberries were already out of season (sadsadsad). But they did have tons of blackberries and olallieberries and loganberries, and even some raspberries that we got to pick up.
So when I came home I pulled out a recipe I was wanting to use my boysenberries for. This lemon and blackberry tart from Just There. As you know, because I've said it a million times I'm sure, once summer comes around I really want lemon things. I made that lemon honey chicken, but it was time for lemon desserts (and there's more on the way, as well as more berry desserts). So I took from the recipe and made my own thing.
In her recipe she used the blackberries to make a sort of syrup that laid underneath the lemon cream layer. Which is all fine and good, but that doesn't highlight the berries as much as I wanted, especially since these were farm fresh picked berries (by Jeff and I!)
So I decided to use blackberry jam on the under layer and then use the lemon cream, then top with blackberries. I actually ended up making two tarts, one which is topped with blackberries and the other one topped with olallieberries.
The berries were super good. Look at their rich color. The ones above are blackberries, the one below are olallieberrries. I think. It's kind of hard to remember now, but that seems right to me.
The blackberries were slightly sweet, rich, with a bit of crunch. Every one was juicy. The olallieberries were sweeter but I think I liked them better. It makes me sad that it's so hard to find them, because they're slowly becoming my favourite berry (boysenberries are my actual favourite).
The blackberry bushes had a lot more sticklies and I kept getting hurt as I picked them. I think the Loganberries may have been worse (I believe I'm going to make some loganberry almond bars out of those). I have the majority of them in the freezer right now, though these were taken before any of them were frozen.
Here you can see the multiple layers. The crust that this recipe makes is SO GOOD. It's rich and sweet and buttery and it compliments the other flavours so well. I liked the layer of jam beforre the lemon cream, it mirrored the flavours well. It was a very thin layer, so it was just enough to give it a bit of pop.
The lemon cream was rich and sweet and tart at the same time. Which is what lemon should be, to me. What's difficult is I changed the recipe somewhat and didn't write it down, so I'm going to have to try to remember it so all of you can make this recipe, because it was SO GOOD. We kept pieces of it in the freezer and ate it when Jeff got back from Vegas too. It stayed good no matter what we did with it. It made a tasty breakfast as well (I know, I know, but it has fresh berries, right??)
Lemon Blackberry (or Olallieberry) Tarts
Adapted from Just There
1 stick of butter
1 cup of flour
4 oz cream cheese
1 tablespoon sugar
A pinch of salt
Cream together the butter and cream cheese until fluffy. In a separate bowl mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Combine all, and mix until well integrated. Press into a tart pan (actually, one large tart pan and one small tart pan is what I did).
Beat the egg with some water, and wash over the edges of the pastry. Dock the pastry bottom (stab it in places with a fork or a docker), so that it won't get too puffy.
Bake in a 350 Degree Oven for 15 minutes, then reduce it to 250 Degrees and cook for 15 or so more minutes. The smaller tart should be done by this point, the larger one might not be, if so cook until just golden brown.
Zest of 2 lemons
2 teaspoons lemon juice
4 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1/8 cup heavy whipping cream
Whip the heavy cream, cream cheese, and lemon zest until combined and fluffy. And the confectionres sugarand whip to combine. Add the lemon juice (and maybe half a pinch of salt), and continue whipping for 2-3 minutes. The texture should be rich and creamy. Taste it, if you want it more lemony or sweeter than that add a bit more lemon juice or sugar. Chill in the fridge for 2-3 hours.
Lemon Cream (chilled)
Olallieberries or Blackberries, or both
Blackberry Fruit Spread
Take the tart shell, once cooled, and spread a layer of blackberry fruit spread. Fill a pastry bag or a ziploc bag with the tip cut off and fill the tart shells with lemon cream. Sprinkle the berries with a very light sprinkle of sugar, and place them on top of the lemon cream layer. Garnish with twirls of lemon or lemon zest, or serve on their own.
Best when chilled. But always delicious.