Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Impressive & Easy Spring Dessert: A Win Win

Sometimes I get ambitious and pin these gorgeous looking things on Pinterest that I know I probably won't ever have the patience to make. I saw a strawberry tart that looked so pretty and when I saw it was essentially no-bake (aside from the crust) I knew I had to make it. The pin directed me to Closet Cooking, which I will definitely be frequenting now. It turned out to be a lot simpler to put together than I thought! I was quite pleased with myself.

This tart was not too sweet or lemony by any means. The crust tasted like shortbread with a hint of lemon and the cheesecake filling had a lemony hint as well that was actually refreshing. The strawberries on top were just the icing on the cake (yeah.. pun intended). The crowd was pretty large on Easter and there weren't too many desserts (a couple of pies, cupcakes, and something else); the other pies only had one slice missing and only 2 cupcakes were eaten, but this pie only had a tiny slice left in the dish by the end of the night.

No-bake Lemon Ricotta Cheesecake with Lemon Poppyseed Crust and an Abundance of Strawberries
Lemon poppy seed shortbread crust
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
1 Tbsp lemon zest
1 Tbsp poppy seeds
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup all-purpose flour

Lemon ricotta no-bake cheesecake filling
1 cup ricotta cheese
4 oz cream cheese, softened (I recommend using Philadelphia brand)
3 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp lemon zest

Pie topping
About 2 lbs strawberries (try to find ones that are average sized, not too small or humongous) 

Lemon poppy seed shortbread crust
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

With a hand mixer or in a stand mixer cream the softened butter. Once butter is completely creamy mix in sugar, lemon zest, poppy seeds and salt until incorporated.

Add flour and mix until crumbs form.

Press the crust mixture into a 9-inch pie dish or tart dish (ungreased). 

Bake for 12 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool completely before adding in the filling (about an hour and a half).

Lemon ricotta no-bake cheesecake filling
Mix together ricotta, cream cheese, honey, lemon juice, and lemon zest until completely smooth (don't over mix though!).

Putting the pie together
Spread the cheesecake mixture in the cooled crust.

Slice strawberries into thirds lengthwise and arrange on top to form the pictured design.


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