Saturday, March 04, 2006

Blueberry and Mascarpone Cake

I wrote in an earlier post that one of my kitchen challenges in 2006 would be to try some P. Herme creations. This dessert started as such, but I both cheated (used store-bought lady fingers) and was careless (did not have all ingredients ready, did not follow instructions carefully etc.) during preparation, so the result fell short of what it could be. It still tasted quite good, and had a deceptively light taste. I think I could have enjoyed it more with different fruit; blueberries are definitely not my favorite.

The components of the cake are lemon syrup soaked lady fingers, a wonderful mousse --a mixture of equal parts of Italian meringue, cream and mascarpone firmed up by gelatin-- and blueberries. The blueberries used inside are cooked very briefly in sugar syrup, so they are sweeter and softer than the fruit used as a topping. The topping is supposed to be made with blueberry jam, but I had no jam of any kind at home, so I had to leave mine plain. My Italian meringue had a softer consistency than I anticipated; hence the runny piping. I think that this was a mistake on my part as I probably could not incorporate all the sugar syrup into the egg whites. Overall, this was a very good dessert, but my favorite in this category of desserts is still Alice Medrich's Raspberry Banana Charlotte.

The recipe for this cake can be found in P. Herme/D. Greenspan's Desserts.