What is Mascarpone cheese, and what do I do with it?

Its not quite cream cheese, but its not quite ricotta either. Mascarpone is a triple-cream cheese, made from a generally low-fat (25%) content fresh cream (as a point of reference - "whole" milk is 4% fat). The real stuff is made from the milk of cows that have been fed special grasses filled with fresh herbs and flowers -- a diet that is said to create a unique taste (described as "fresh and delicious.") - right, the happy California cows eat better!

Mascarpone is used in regional dishes of Lombardy, Italy. It generally is used alone (sometimes a bit of sugar is added) or in zabaglione. Milky-white in color, it is a thick cream that is easily spread. When fresh, it smells like milk and cream (which, it is). It can even be used in place of butter to thicken and enrich risotto.

The cheese apparently originated in the area between Lodi and Abbiategrasso, west and south of Milan, probably in the late-16th or early-17th century. The name comes from "mascarpa," a milk product made from the whey of stracchino or aged cheese. Some contend the name comes from "mascarpia," the local dialect for ricotta, since both cheeses are made by a basically the same process. Now, isn't your life just a little better for knowing that :-)

Basic Tiramisu

8 servings

6 Egg yolks
6 tb Sugar
6 tb Dry Marsala
1 lb Mascarpone room temp.
2/3 c Chilled whipping cream
1/3 c Freshly brewed Espresso coffee
1/4 c Dark rum
3 tb Sugar
1 ts Vanilla extract
1 12x6x1 layer sponge cake cut
3 tb Shaved bittersweet chocolate
3 tb Finely ground Espresso coffee

First, make a zabaglione...

Whisk yolks, 6 tablespoons sugar, and Marsala in large metal bowl to blend.
Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water (do not allow water to touch bottom of bowl) or just use a double boiler.
Using portable electric mixer beat until mixture triples
in volume about 5 minutes.
Cover zabaglione and refrigerate until well chilled.


Place mascarpone in large bowl.
Place cream in a medium bowl.
Using electric mixer whip cream with 2 tablespoons sugar to soft peaks.
Fold into mascarpone.
Gently fold in the zabaglione.
Refrigerate until well chilled (about 3 hours).


Combine espresso coffee, rum, 3 tablespoons sugar, and vanilla in small bowl.
Brush over both sides of cake pieces.
Place generous tablespoon mascarpone mixture in bottom of each of 8 balloon-shaped wineglasses.
Set cake square or wedge into each at angle.
Top with remaining mascarpone mixture.


Combine shaved chocolate and ground coffee beans.
Sprinkle over desserts.
Refrigerate at least 30 minutes and up to 3 hours.
Christmas Tiramisu

10 servings

1 lb Mascarpone or soft cream
3/4 c Sugar
8 lg Egg yolks
1/2 c Sweet wine
2 c Expresso or very strong
Black coffee (approx)
9 oz Ladyfingers or 14 oz. angel
Food or sponge cake, thinly
1 tb Unsweetened cocoa

In a small bowl, using a fork, beat the cheese until creamy. Set aside.

Place a large (about 10-12 cups capacity) metal bowl over a pot of boiling water (or use a double boiler).
Using a hand-held electric mixer set on medium high, beat the sugar and egg yolks in the bowl for 1 minute, or until the mixture is well blended. With the mixer set on low speed to prevent splashing, gradually add the wine.
Continue to cook and beat the mixture, increasing the speed to medium and then to high as the mixture thickens. Cook and beat for 5-7 minutes, or until the mixture is thickened and light, scraping down the sides of the bowl frequently with a rubber spatula.

Remove the bowl from the heat and continue to beat the mixture for 1 minute longer. Beat in the cheese just until blended (makes about 5 cups).

Pour one cup of the espresso into a small shallow bowl that is large enough to hold a ladyfinger if it is placed horizontally in the bowl.

Quickly dip the rounded top side of each ladyfinger into the espresso. Only the top half of the ladyfingers should be soaked with the espresso. If the ladyfingers get too wet, they will fall apart! Add more coffee to the bowl as needed.

Place the ladyfingers, flat side down, in the bottom of a 13 x 9 glass or ceramic pan. Do not use a metal pan. Form one layer. Pour half of the custard mixture over the ladyfingers and spread to cover them. Dip the remaining ladyfingers in the espresso (there will be a few remaining ones and form a second layer over the custard mixture.
Pour the remaining custard mixture over the ladyfingers and spread to an even layer.

Place the cocoa in a strainer and dust the top of the tiramisu evenly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 10 hours.
Dumpling Fillings
(can be used as Won Tons or Empanadas)

36 Servings

1 lb Mascarpone cheese
2 tb Wasabi mustard paste
1/3 c Pickled ginger - chopped
1 bn Green onions - slivered
36 Won Ton Wrappers (or those really neat
Goya brand Empanada wraps)

Combine and let the mixture marry for at least an hour.
stuff your wraps (how you do this depends on what end result you want -

Now there is a Restaurant in Manhattan (of all places) called Balducci's. They make a popular variation, and here's the secret...

Their Ladyfingers are toasted In A 375 Degree Oven for 15 Min.
and they don't just use wine, they use
2 tb Marsala Wine
2 tb Triple Sec
2 tb Brandy and
2 tb Orange Extract

but you can go them one better: forget the triple sec, brandy and orange extract, and use Grand Mariner! (and save me some)
Okay - the first two variations call for raw egg yolks. If you're worried about that, you can buy pasteurized eggs (these have been heated to kill off any bacteria). If you can't find pasteurized eggs, here is a variation that will cover you with the USDA*

Cooked Tiramisu

8 servings

6 Egg yolks
1/2 c Granulated sugar
2 T Brandy or almond extract
1 1/3 c Extra strong coffee
1 lb Mascarpone or ricotta cheese
1 1/2 c Cream; whipping
24 Ladyfingers; giant Italian
4 oz Chocolate semisweet; chopped

In bowl, beat egg yolks with sugar till light about 5 minutes.
Whisk in 1/2 cup coffee and 1 tbsp brandy or almond extract.
Transfer to double boiler

Over gently simmering water, whisk for about 7 minutes, till thickened.

*(if you are a real stickler - make sure it reached 165 F)

Let cool.
Beat cheese till smooth.
Fold into egg mixture.

Whip the cream
Stir 1/4 into egg mixture.
Fold in the remaining cream.
Combine remaining strong coffee and 1 Tbsp brandy or almond extract.

Arrange 1/2 of the ladyfingers in 11X7" glass baking dish
Brush with half of the coffee mixture.
Spread with half of cream mixture.

Repeat layers.

Top with chocolate.

Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Okay - what if you don't want to mess with egg yolks at all? - or want something to do with the egg whites when you're done?, well how about..

Tiramisu Parfaits

4 servings

1 Egg white; large
1 pn Cream of tartar
2/3 c Sugar
1/2 lb Mascarpone cheese
2 tb Dark rum
2 oz Bittersweet chocolate; chopped fine
1 c Butter cookies; crumbs or pound cake crumbs
1 c Coffee; brewed/lukewarm
2 oz Bittersweet chocolate; chopped fine

Put the egg white in a bowl of an electric mixer and put the bowl in a second bowl of hot water and let the whites stand, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.

Add the cream of tartar and salt and beat the white until it just holds stiff peaks.
While the white is being beaten, combine the sugar and 1/4 cup of water in a saucepan.
Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, and boil the resulting syrup until it registers 240 degrees F
Slowly add the sugar syrup to the whites in a stream beating it at all times. Beat the mixture until it is cool.

Add the mascarpone, rum and chocolate and beat until well combined.
Divide the cookie or cake crumbs among 4 stemmed glasses.
Drizzle each portion with 2 tablespoons of the coffee
Top the crumbs with half the mascarpone mixture.
Layer the remaining cookie crumbs, coffee and mascarpone mixture in the same manner.

Chill the parfaits, covered for at least 2 hours.

In a metal bowl (set over a pan of barely simmering water) melt the chocolate.

Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and spread the chocolate about 1/8" thick.

Chill (the chocolate, not you)

Cut the chocolate into triangles on the baking sheet  (chill until it is just set, but not hard, and with a pastry wheel, cut it into triangles. Chill the chocolate triangles on the baking sheet until they have hardened and peel the foil carefully from them).

Garnish each parfait with a chocolate triangle.
Grilled Peaches with Mascarpone

3 servings

6 Ripe peaches
2oz Mascarpone
2oz Castor sugar

Preheat the broiler.
Halve & stone the peaches,
put them cut side up into a flat heatproof dish,
put dollops of mascarpone cheese in the hollows.
Sprinkle with half the sugar and place under the broiler.
Cook 4 mins,
remove from heat & sprinkle with remaining sugar.
Grill once more until fruit is tender, the cheese is melted & the sugar is golden in patches.

Eat it while its warm
Peaches with White Wine

6 Servings

6 Peaches, peeled and sliced
1 c Dry white wine
1 c Mascarpone
1/2 c Low-fat yogurt
2 tb Sugar
2 tb Peach schnapps

Place peaches in bowl.
Pour over wine and marinate for 1 hour.
Beat together Mascarpone, yogurt, Sugar & schnapps.

Just before serving, scoop out peaches with a slotted spoon.
Place in glass bowls or wine glasses.

Top with mascarpone mixture.
Tiramisu Dessert Pizza

12 oz Mascarpone cheese
1/3 c Confectioners' sugar
1/4 c Brewed espresso, cooled
Unsweetened cocoa powder
Confectioner's sugar
Fresh raspberries (garnish)
1 personal sized pizza crust

In a food processor or mixing bowl, whip the mascarpone cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth and creamy.

Beat in the espresso. The mixture should be creamy and easy to spread at this point; if not, add a bit more espresso.

Spread a thick layer of tiramisu filling over a baked pizza shell. Dust the cheese liberally with cocoa powder, followed by a very light dusting of confectioners' sugar to achieve a dappled effect.

Fresh fruit such as raspberries can be arranged around the edge of the pizza as a garnish.

Chill and serve
Baked Apples Stuffed with Mascarpone

4 servings

4 lg Apples  (about 2 lbs)
1/4 c Dried cranberries
1/3 c Grand Mariner
6 oz Mascarpone
1/2 c Chopped pecans
1/2 c packed Dk brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Core the apples, leaving the bottoms intact.
Peel off the skin around the top, leaving two-thirds of the apple unpeeled.
Use a grapefruit spoon to hollow out about a 1 1/2-inch wide by 2 1/2-inch deep pocket in the center of each apple.

Place the cranberries and liqueur in a small saucepan over low heat. Bring to a simmer and remove from the heat.
Pour the cranberries and liqueur into a small bowl and let cool.

When cool, mix in the mascarpone, pecans and brown sugar.
Fill the pockets of the apples with the stuffing
Place the apples in a shallow baking pan.
Add about 1 inch of water.

Bake until the apples are tender, about 30 minutes.

Serve warm.
Linguine with Walnut Cheese Sauce

4 Servings

2 Egg yolks
1/2 c Chopped walnuts
3 T Pine nuts
7 oz Mascarpone cheese
Salt to taste
Dash of nutmeg
3/4 lb Linguine

Combine first six ingredients until well mixed and set aside.
Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente.
Drain pasta and add sauce.

Serve immediately (if not sooner!).
Fig and Prosciutto Sandwiches

32 Sandwiches

8 Thin slices whole-grain bread
1 c Mascarpone
8 Ripe green figs, stemmed
8 Thin slices of prosciutto (about 4 oz)
32 Fresh mint leaves

Remove crusts from bread and cut each slice into 4 squares.
Spread mascarpone on each square.
Cut each fig lengthwise into 4 slices.
Tear prosciutto slices into quarters & place a folded slice on each square.
Top with a mint leaf and a slice of fig.
Strawberry Mascarpone Fool

6 Servings

3 pt Strawberries hulled and sliced
3 tb Sugar
2 tb Balsamic vinegar
1 c Mascarpone cheese
1 c Heavy cream well chilled

In a bowl toss the strawberries with the sugar and the vinegar.
Let them macerate at room temperature for 1 hour, tossing them occasionally.
Reserve one cup of the strawberry mixture.
In a food processor or blender puree the remaining mixture adding the Mascarpone, until completely smooth.
Beat the heavy cream in a large chilled bowl (with an electric mixer) until it holds stiff peaks.
Fold in the Mascarpone mixture (gently but thoroughly).
Divide the reserved strawberry mixture among 6 stemmed dessert glasses
Spoon the cream mixture over each and chill for 1 hour.
Saffron Poached Pears

2 Servings

2 Fresh pears, any variety, peeled, halved and cored
6 c Water
1/4 c Granulated sugar
1 Cinnamon stick
Pinch saffron threads
Mascarpone cheese
Fresh raspberries

Combine Fresh pears, Water, sugar, cinnamon stick & saffron in saucepan
Simmer pears until easily pierced by a small knife, about 30 minutes.
Remove pears and refrigerate.
Serve well chilled with a spoonful of Mascarpone cheese and fresh berries.
Spotted Chocolate Cheesecake w/Lychee Love Liquid

12 Servings

3 tb Butter, melted
1 1/2 c Oreo cookie crumbs

2 lb cream cheese
16 oz mascarpone cheese
1 c Granulated sugar
1 ts Vanilla
8 Eggs
10 oz semisweet chocolate (melted)

8 oz. cleaned, pitted lychee fruit
Juice of 1 lemon

For crust:
melt butter
blend with cookie crumbs
press over bottom and slightly up sides of a greased 10 inch spring-form pan.  then chill (the crust :-).

For filling:
Cream the cheeses on slow speed of mixer.
Add sugar.  Blend until smooth.
Add vanilla.
Beat in eggs one at a time.
Remove one-third of the cheese mixture, set aside.
Add warm, not hot, melted chocolate to remaining cheese mixture.
Pour into spring-form pan.
Transfer reserved cheese mixture into piping bag.
Place tip well into chocolate cheese mixture
Squeeze a large even dot in center.
Continue making smaller dots in batter around cake and rim.
Bake in a 275F oven for 1 1/2 hours or until firm in center.

For Lychee sauce:
Blend lychee fruit and lemon in food processor until smooth.

Serve each slice of the "cake" surrounded by a pool of sauce.
Prosciutto with Caramelized Pears

6 servings

3 Pears (bosc preferred)
3 tb Olive Oil (Ext-Virg. pref.)
Salt and fleshly ground black pepper
3 tb Blue cheese
3 tb Mascarpone cheese
12 sl (thin) prosciutto
6 Sprigs of Watercress
1/4 c Skinned & toasted hazelnuts (or walnuts)

Heat oven to 375 deg.

Wash and fry pears;
Slice them in half lengthwise.
Rub the pear halves all over with a tablespoon of olive oil
Season with salt and pepper.
Place, cut side down, on a heavy sheet pan
Roast on a rack set low in the oven until soft and cut sides have browned and caramelized (40 -45 min.)

Meanwhile, place blue cheese and mascarpone in mixer and cream together.
Taste and season with salt an pepper if desired.
Set aside.

Arrange 2 slices of prosciutto on each of 6 plates and position a watercress sprig on the side.

When the pears are soft, remove them from the oven.
Remove the cores with a spoon.
Place 1 Tablespoon of the cheese mixture into the hollow of each pear half.
Return to the oven until cheeses melt (5 -7 min.)

Transfer half-pears, 1 to each plate.
Drizzle a teaspoon of olive oil over each and sprinkle with hazelnuts.

Serve at once.
Strawberries with Walnut Mascarpone

6 servings

1 1/2 pt Strawberries, sliced or whole
1/2 c Walnuts
1 ts Sugar
1/2 c Mascarpone
1 tb Coffee liqueur

Process walnuts with sugar in food processor until mixture becomes a paste.

Scrape the work bowl and add mascarpone and coffee liqueur

Process until smooth.

Serve as sauce with berries.
Strawberry Tarts

6 servings

1 pk ( 10-oz ) frozen puff pastry shells
1/2 c Heavy cream
1 tb Sugar
1 Container (3-1/2 oz) mascarpone
1 tb Cherry-flavored liqueur
1 pt Strawberries, hulled and halved
1/2 c Strawberry jelly

Preheat oven to 400.
Bake puff pastry shells according to directions.
Cool on wire rack.
Meanwhile, in medium bowl, with electric mixer on high, beat
heavy cream and sugar until stiff peaks form.
In a medium bowl, combine cheese and liqueur; beat until soft.
Fold whipped cream into cheese mixture.
Place a few strawberry halves on the bottom of each shell; fill
with cream mixture.
Top with strawberry halves cut into fan shape.
In small saucepan, over medium-low heat, cook jelly with 2 tsp water until melted.
Brush jelly over strawberries.
Garnish with remaining strawberries.
Agnolotti Ignudi Al Mascarpone (Meat Balls in Mascarpone)

8 servings

4 oz Prosciutto; in one piece
4 oz Pancetta; in one piece
2 Italian sausages without fennel seed
4 tb Unsalted butter
4 Extra-large eggs
3/4 c Bread crumbs, unseasoned
5 tb Parmesan cheese; grated
Salt & black pepper to taste

8 tb Unsalted butter
1/2 lb Mascarpone
1/2 c Heavy cream
Salt & black pepper to taste
1 pn Freshly grated nutmeg

8 tb Parmesan cheese; grated
4 qt Chicken broth

Cut the prosciutto and pancetta into small pieces
Remove the casing from the sausages.
Using a meat grinder, grind together the prosciutto, pancetta,
and sausages.
Place the ground meat in a crockery or glass bowl
Add the butter and eggs
Mix very well with a wooden spoon until the butter is completely incorporated.
Add the bread crumbs and Parmesan, season with salt and pepper.
Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Bring the broth to a boil in a large pot over medium heat.
Meanwhile place a large skillet with the butter over low heat.
When the broth reaches a boil, start shaping the meat mixture into tiny meat balls;use a melon "baller" but make sure the meat balls are solid with no holes inside.
Drop the balls into the boiling broth a few at a time, and as they rise to the top, transfer them with a slotted spoon to the skillet containing the butter.
When all the meat balls are cooked and in the skillet, add the mascarpone and heavy cream.
Mix very well and simmer for 1 or 2 minutes, or until the mascarpone is completely dissolved.
Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Mix very well
Then transfer to a warmed serving platter.
Serve immediately, with some Parmesan on the side.
Lasagne Frutta

2 Servings

5 oz Cottage Cheese, pureed
5 oz Mascarpone
2 Eggs separated (as they just don't get along)
3 tb Sugar
1 Lemon
3 oz Raisins
2 oz Almonds, chopped
2 oz Pistachios, hopped
1 Tart Apple
3 Lasagna noodles

Mix the pureed cheese with the egg yolk, sugar and lemon juice.
Grate the lemon peel and add with raisins and half of the pistachios.
Beat egg whites until stiff and fold under all.
Peel & core apples and cut into small strips.
Boil noodles about 3 minutes; run quickly under cold water.
In a small lasagna form alternate noodles, apples and cheese mix,
ending with cheese.
Bake for 40 minutes at 350 degreed F in preheated oven.
Before serving sprinkle the rest of the pistachios over the top.


Smoked Salmon Pizza

2 Pizzas

3/4 c Mascarpone cheese
2 md Shallots, minced
1 tb Fresh lemon juice
2 tb Chopped fresh chives
4 oz Smoked salmon
2 12" Pizza Shells

Put a pizza stone on the lowest rack of the oven. Preheat to 400'F.
(If you use a metal pizza pan instead, do not preheat the pan.)
Mix cheese, shallots, lemon juice and 1 tablespoon chives.
Spread over 2 12" pizza shells.
Slide the pizzas onto the pizza stone.
Bake 15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.
Immediately sprinkle with salmon and chives.

Mashed Potatoes W/mascarpone Cheese & Roasted Garlic

4 servings

4 Idaho potatoes; peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tb Mascarpone cheese
3 sm Garlic cloves; roasted, peeled and finely chopped
1 tb Unsalted butter
1/2 c Heavy cream; warmed
1/4 ts Kosher salt; or to taste
1 ds White pepper; or to taste
4 ts Basil-infused oil (don't cheat, make your own)

suggestion: Serve with Grilled Balsamic Veal Chops

In a saucepan, place potatoes in enough cold water to cover them. Bring to a simmer, then cook until soft, about 30 minutes. Drain.

Mash potatoes, Add cheese, garlic, butter and cream; mix at medium speed until combined. Season with salt and white pepper.

Spoon onto individual plates. Drizzle 1 teaspoon basil-infused oil over each serving.
Sweet Vanilla Polenta

8 servings

4 c Skim milk
pn Salt
1 Vanilla bean; split lengthwise
1 c Finely ground cornmeal
1/2 c Sugar
1/2 c Mascarpone cheese
strawberry or apricot preserves (opt)

Combine the milk, salt, and vanilla bean halves in a heavy saucepan.
Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer.
Slowly add the cornmeal, stirring constantly, and cook, continuing to stir for 5 to 7 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the sugar
Allow polenta* to sit, covered, for 5 minutes.
Remove the vanilla beans halves.
Divide the polenta between 8 dessert dishes.
Spoon Mascarpone cheese (& preserves) in the center of each serving.
*Of course if you're from the American South, you may call this grits,but it ain't



Pound Cake with Mascarpone Sauce

10 servings

5 Large Eggs, separated*
5 tb Granulated Sugar
18 oz (1 1/2 pkgs) Mascarpone, at room temperature
2 tb Brandy (or grand marnier)
1 Pound Cake
Fresh Strawberries or blackberries for garnish

(* NOTE: The egg yolks in the sauce are uncooked.)

Beat the egg yolks and sugar together in a bowl with a mixer until
light and lemon-colored.
Beat the mascarpone into the egg-yolk mixture until well blended
don't overmix, or sauce may separate.
Beat in the 2 tablespoons of brandy.

In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites until they form stiff peaks.
Fold egg whites into the Mascarpone mixture.
Refrigerate until serving time.

Cut the cake into 1 inch thick slices, place on a plate and
spoon mascarpone sauce over it. Decorate each portion with fresh berries.


Pansotti Triangles with Artichokes Like Genoa

4 Servings

2 oz Artichoke hearts -- fresh or Thawed
1/4 c Ricotta cheese
2 tb Mascarpone cheese
1/2 c Grated parmesan cheese
1 ts Arugula leaves minced
1 ts Fresh flat-leaf parsley minced
1/4 ts Minced garlic
Salt and pepper
Freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 lb Pasta fresh (flat as if for ravioli) cut in 2" squares

1/4 c Unsalted butter
1/2 c Chopped artichoke hearts Steamed
2 tb Chopped fresh herbs (select your favorite)
1/4 c Arugula leaves
Salt and pepper

Prepare frozen artichoke hearts according to package directions.
roughly 2 ounces are needed for the soft-cheese filling.

Make FILLING the day before.
In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, puree 2 ounces of artichokes
and ricotta cheese until smooth.
In a bowl, combine the puree, mascarpone and parmesan, argula, parsley and garlic.
Mix well. Refrigerate over night.

Fill each square with 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of the filling.
Fold the pasta over to form a triangle. Use water to hold edge.
Place in a single layer on a rack until slightly dry to the the touch
(1 to 2 hours). The pasta will cook in 2 to 3 minutes.

Make the sauce.
In a large frying pan over low heat, melt the butter.
Add chopped artichoke hearts and saute until heated through, about 1 minute.
Drain the pasta briefly in a colander and immediately add it to the
Raise the heat to high and toss the pasta gently.
Add the herbs and arugula and toss again until mixed.

Serve immediately.

Serves 8 first or 4 main courses.


Chocolate Sponge Slices

1 Servings

1 c Mascarpone
1/4 c Sugar
3 tb Brandy
11 oz Chocolate (semi-sweet)
4 To 5 tb water
Filberts- toasted & crushed
1 Sponge Cake

Beat the mascarpone, sugar and brandy with a wooden spoon.
Cut a sponge cake into little rectangles.
Spread with mascarpone mixture and top with another slice of
cake to make a sandwich. Lightly press together.
In a double boiler, melt the chocolate.
Remove from heat and before it cools dip the little sandwiches
and coat on all sides.
Use a fork to hold and a spoon to drip the choc. to cover all spots.
Place on serving dish and sprinkle with the chopped nuts.
Refrigerate to harden outside.
but serve almost at room temp.


Potato Chip Caviar

1 Servings

1 Idaho potato, washed
-Olive Oil for frying
-salt and pepper to taste
1/2 c Mascarpone cheese
-salmon caviar
-American black caviar

Slice the Idaho Potato into 1/8-inch slices.
Fry until golden brown.
Lay the chips on paper towels to drain.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Spoon mascarpone into a piping bag with a star tip.
Pipe out 1 teaspoon of mascarpone onto the center of each chip.
Garnish with chopped chives.
Place 1 teaspoon of each caviar on either side of the mascarpone.


Roasted Apricots with Mascarpone & Pine nuts

4 Servings

2 lb Apricots
8 oz Mascarpone
2 tb Pine nuts (also called pine Kernels or pignoli nuts)
2 oz Brandy
5 oz White wine

Preheat the oven to 375F.
Put the apricots in a shallow roasting tin and roast for 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven.
place over a moderate heat,
Add the brandy and wine to the roasting tin and gently
remove the apricots.
Reduce the sauce over a gentle heat for two minutes.

In a dry frying pan toast the pine nuts over a moderate heat until they
are golden and set aside.

Peel the apricots, cut in half and gently ease out the pits.
Put a dollop of mascarpone in the middle of each plate,
pour the sauce around the edge,
arrange the fruit on top of the sauce
sprinkle the pine nut over it all.


Salad of Goat Cheese Fritters With

4 Servings

4 sm Round zucchini
4 Baby artichokes
4 lg Cherry tomatoes
4 Zucchini flowers

For the tomato coulis:
1/2 c Extra virgin olive oil
2 tb White onion
1 ts Garlic cloves
1 c Vine-ripened tomatoes
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
1 tb Sherry vinegar

For the fritters:
1 Log farm fresh goat cheese (8 ounces)
4 tb Mascarpone cheese
1 tb Italian parsley
1 tb Chives
Salt to taste
White pepper to taste
1 c Panko bread crumbs

For the salad:
4 c Mesclun greens
1 tb Sherry vinegar
1 tb Extra virgin olive oil
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

Preparation of the vegetables:

Blanch zucchini and artichoke.
Remove middle and stuff with appropriate filling (following).
Peel and hollow tomato and fill zucchini flower.
Steam zucchini flower 30 seconds.
Chill and reserve.

Preparation of the fillings:

Zucchini: Diced zucchini with scallions and thyme, parmigiano reggiano.
Tomato: Chopped confit tomato, roasted garlic and fresh basil.
Artichoke: Diced artichoke, sage, and black olive relish.
Zucchini Flower: Eggplant caviar with parsley.

Preparation of the tomato coulis:

In a heavy sauce pan, heat 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil.
Add the white onion and garlic cloves.
Sweat over medium heat for five minutes.
Add chopped tomato and simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove from heat, puree, and add seasonings, vinegar, and remaining
olive oil.
Strain and reserve chilled.

Preparation of the fritters:

Mix the goat cheese and mascarpone with the herbs and seasonings.
Roll into a cylinder and refrigerate.
Cut into 1 1/2-inch tubes and bread lightly with panko bread crumbs.
Fry in extra virgin olive oil.
Drain and reserve warm.

To finish the dish:

Place warm goat cheese fritters on the chilled greens.
Combine the sherry vinegar, oil, and salt and pepper.
Place stuffed chilled vegetables around and drizzle with both sauces.

Serve chilled.




Lumache Con Mascarpone E Noci
(Fancy Mac 'n' Cheese)

4 Servings

1/2 lb Pasta shells
3 tb Butter
3/4 c Mascarpone cheese
3 tb Parmesan cheese
1/3 c Walnuts; toasted & finely chopped

Cook pasta to the aldente stage; drain.
Melt butter in a fireproof serving dish.
Add the mascarpone cheese.
Add cooked pasta to the warm mascarpone mixture, coating it well.
Add the parmesan cheese and chopped walnuts.
Serve with extra parmesan to taste.


Mascarpone with Wafers~ Caramelised Fresh Fig

1 Servings

2 oz Unsalted butter
2 oz Sugar
8 oz Golden syrup
1 tb Brandy
1/2 tb Lemon juice
2 oz Flour
1 tb Ginger powder

1/4 c Sugar
4 Egg white
1/2 stk Unsalted butter
100 g Flour

1 Fresh fig per serving
confectioner's sugar

generic Orange sauce

preheat oven to 375 degree F

To make wafers:
process all the snap and tuile ingredients, separately, in
a food processor until smooth.
Mix the two together and spread thinly and evenly onto
parchment lined non-stick biscuit trays.

Cook until golden brown.
Remove the trays, cut the wafers into rounds with a 4 inch
biscuit cutter and cool.

To cook figs:
halve figs, sprinkle with sugar and place under broiler.

To serve:
sandwich 2 wafers with a generous amount of mascarpone.
Serve with figs and orange sauce.


Very chocolate - Mascarpone Cupcakes:

5 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
(to make life easier, use chips/morsels)
1 cup water
1/3 cup mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 tb real vanilla extract +
1/2 t vanilla extract
3 c all-purpose flour
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
1/2 t baking powder
12 oz semisweet chocolate chips
2/3 c heavy whipping cream

For the Cupcakes:

Place an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat
to 325 degrees F.
Combine the unsweetened chocolate and water in a small
saucepan over medium-low heat.
Stir constantly until the chocolate is melted, about 2 minutes.
Cool for 2 minutes.

Whisk in the mascarpone cheese until the mixture is smooth.
Beat the sugar, oil, eggs, and 1 tb of vanilla in a large
bowl for 30 seconds.
Stir in the mascarpone mixture.
Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, and 1/2 of the chocolate chips in a medium bowl.
Add the dry ingredients to the chocolate mixture.
Stir until just blended.

Divide the batter among 12 paper lined muffin molds.
Let rest for 15 minutes.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into
the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes completely before topping/dipping, about 1 hour.

For the topping:

Place the remaining chocolate chips in a small bowl.
Combine the heavy cream and remaining vanilla extract in
a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
Cook until small bubbles appear on the outside edge of the cream.
Pour the hot cream mixture over the chocolate chips.
Using a fork, gently stir until all the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Dip the tops of each cupcake in the mixture and transfer to a
cooling rack or baking sheet. Place the dipped cupcakes in the refrigerator to set,
about 15 to 20 minutes.
Serve at room temperature.


Bailey's Frozen Chocolate Chunk Mousse Cake

8 Servings

This one is in 3 parts (cake, mousse and garnish;

1/4 c Ground espresso
1/2 c Water
1 c Cake flour (not self-rising)
1/2 ts Baking soda
1/4 ts Salt
4 tb Unsalted butter
1/2 c Plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 lg Eggs
1/2 ts Vanilla extract
1/4 c Sour cream

5 oz Bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/4 c Plus 2 tablespoons milk
1/4 c Granulated sugar
1/8 t Salt
2 ts Vanilla extract
1/2 c Bailey's Irish Cream Liqueur
6 oz Mascarpone, softened
1 c Heavy cream
1/4 c Hazelnuts, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped
4 oz Bittersweet chocolate, cut into 1/2-inch chunks

3/4 c Heavy cream
2 tb Bailey's Irish Cream Liqueur
1 tb Confectioners' sugar
2 oz Bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 350 F.
Lightly butter an 8-inch square cake pan.
Dust the pan with flour and tap out the excess.
(or use baker's joy or another similar spray on flour)
Place the ground espresso into a cup or small bowl.
Heat the water to boiling and pour it over the espresso powder.
Allow the grounds to steep for 5 minutes.
Strain the coffee through a double layer of cheesecloth.
Measure 1/4 cup of the coffee and set aside.
In a large bowl, using a wire whisk, stir together the flour,
baking soda and salt.
Sift the mixture onto a large piece of waxed paper.
Assuming you have a Kitchen Aid mixer, using the paddle attachment,
beat the butter on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes until creamy.
Gradually add the sugar, blending well between additions, and scraping
down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Add the eggs one at a time and beat until combined.
Add vanilla and sour cream.
On low speed, add half of the flour mixture and beat until combined.
Add the 1/4 cup of espresso, and mix well.
Add the remaining flour mixture.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes
or until the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and
a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
(note - you cannot effectivly clean all your utensils this way)
Remove pan from oven and set on a wire rack to cool completely.

Wasn't that fun? and that was just the cake...

Put the chocolate in a food processor fitted with metal chopping blade(s).
Process for 20 to 30 seconds, until finely ground.
In a small saucepan, combine the milk, sugar and salt.
Cook over medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until the sugar
dissolves and the milk comes to a boil.
Remove the pan from the heat.
Add the vanilla extract and 1/4 cup of the Bailey's.
With the motor of the food processor running, pour the hot milk through
the feeding tube.
Process for 10 to 20 seconds, until the chocolate is completely melted.
Using a spatula, scrape the chocolate mixture into a large bowl and cool
for about 5 minutes, until tepid (fancy way of saying warm).
Back to the Kitchen aid mixer and the paddle attachment; beat the mascarpone
at medium-low speed just until softened.
Gradually add the rest of the Bailey's, scraping down the side of
the bowl as necessary.
Switch to the wire whip attachment, and beat on medium speed
Add the heavy cream.
Increase the speed to medium-high and continue beating 2-3 minutes,
until soft peaks are formed when the whip is lifted.
Using a large rubber spatula, fold one-third of the whipped cream
mixture into the chocolate mixture to lighten it.
Fold the remaining whipped cream into the chocolate mixture.
Fold the toasted nuts and chocolate chunks into the mousse.

Well, that's the hard part - now you have to assemble the cake (you
know, like a leggo set)

Line an 8-inch square pan with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on
two opposite sides of the pan.
Using a long serrated knife, slice the cake horizontally into two
layers of equal thickness.
Place the top layer, cut side up, in the bottom of the pan.
Scrape the mousse onto the cake layer in the pan.
Smooth the top with a small metal cake spatula.
Place the second layer, cut side down, on top of the mousse.

Now for the Garnish

Back to the mixer again, this time with the wire whip attachment, combine
the heavy cream, Bailey's, and confectioners' sugar and beat on medium
-high speed until medium-stiff peaks are formed when the whip is lifted.

what to do with it?, well..

With a small metal spatula, spread the top of the cake with the whipped
cream garnish.
Sprinkle the chocolate chunks over the whipped cream.


Freeze the cake for 6 hours or overnight.
Remove the cake from the freezer.
Lift it out of the pan, using the overhanging pieces of foil as handles,
and set it on a cutting board to temper (fancy way of saying warm-up) for
30 minutes.
With a sharp knife, trim the four sides of the cake
Cut the cake into eight 4-inch-by2-inch bars.

And it that isn't rich enough -

Serve on dessert plates with warm chocolate sauce.



Mascarpone Cheese
(make your own)

1 pint heavy cream
1/2 tsp tartaric acid
available at pharmacies, or stores that sell wine making supplies
1/4 tsp confectioner's sugar (some say this is optional - not me)

Fill the bottom of a double boiler with just enough water to touch
the top pan.

Bring to a simmer.

Pour the cream into the top pan and place over simmering water.

Add the confectioner's sugar whisking constantly.

When the cream is warm add the tartaric acid.

Whisk over the heat until the cream reaches a temperature of 180 degrees.

Remove from heat and allow to cool, whisking occasionally.

Pour the mixture into a bowl through a fine metal strainer with a coffee filter
or use a cheese cloth.

Allow the mascarpone to cool to room temperature, cover the strainer tightly
with plastic wrap.

Refrigerate for 24 hours to allow the cheese to finish draining and become firm.
Store in the refrigerator in a tightly covered container

Cover the bowl and refrigerator for at least 12 hours before use.


oh wait - that's too hard? - well the New England Cheesemaking Supply Company sells a kit for $12.95 (plus shipping and handling). It comes with a recipe booklet, tartaric acid, fine cheesecloth and a dairy thermometer.



Way too easy? - well try this..

1 quart whipping cream
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar (or lemon juice).

Start with a stainless steel bowl that fits inside a large saucepan
(make sure it does NOT touch the bottom of the pan).

Add water to the pan
test the height of the water by placing the bowl in the pan so that the bowl
touches the surface of the water but still sits firmly on the rim of the pan.
Remove the bowl
Place the pan on medium heat, and bring the water to a boil.
Place the cream in the bowl and place over the boiling water.
Adjust the heat under the pan to medium, and heat the cream, checking the temperature often with an instant-read thermometer, to 190 degrees Fahrenheit, stirring occasionally.
Stir in the vinegar, continuing to stir gently until the cream begins to curdle.
Remove the pan from the heat, cover, and allow the curds to firm up for 10 minutes.
Line a strainer or colander with dampened cheesecloth, napkin, or coffee filters.
Set the curds into the strainer.
Allow the mascarpone to cool to room temperature, cover the strainer tightly with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate for 24 hours to allow the cheese to finish draining and become firm.
Store in the refrigerator in a tightly covered container.

Now for my money - that's cream cheese - I think you need that touch of sugar,
but who knows?