Friday, January 13, 2012

Rustic Ricotta Tart with Blood Oranges

A group of my on-line friends have started a food challenge.  Once or twice a month one ingredient will be chosen and we all have to find and make a recipe with that item.  The first item chosen was CaraCara or Blood Oranges.  I had heard of Blood Oranges but I've probably only bought one time many years ago. I had never heard of CaraCara oranges.  This was going to be fun.  I love to try new foods and recipes as it's easy to get stuck in a rut - especially at this time of year...and also I have alot of accounting to catch up on that I would love to put off to another day. :)

I purchased a bag of Red Moro Oranges.  Funny enough there was a bag of  CaraCara oranges right next to them.  If it weren't for this challenge I would have never noticed them.  The first cut into a Blood Orange is a bit alarming but the colour is so amazing.  These ones are slightly tart but sweet at the same time.

I had something in mind for a recipe. A rustic tart type dessert using a ricotta cheese base and topped with the fruit. I couldn't find just what I was looking for but managed to piece enough ideas together to come up with this.

Rustic Ricotta Tart with Blood Oranges

I used puff pastry as my base.  What a great product and so easy to use.  I used  President's Choice brand Butter Puff Pastry.  (You can find it in the freezer section).  It comes with 2 pre-rolled sheets (about 10x8").  You can either connect these to make one big tart, make two smaller ones (which I did) or ½ the recipe for the filling and fruit and use just one sheet.

Preheat oven to 375°F
Puff Pastry
Thaw out the puff pastry according to box instructions.  You can lightly roll it out on a floured surface.  Place on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Pinch around all the the edges to make a lip.  This will help to hold your ricotta cheese mixture in.

1 cup ricotta cheese
3 Tbsp. cream cheese
2 Tbsp. honey
 ¼ - ½ cup sugar (taste it before you add the eggs to determine your sweetness)
 ¼ tsp. nutmeg
grated orange zest
2 eggs
 ¼ cup flour
1 Tbsp. cornstarch

In an electric mixer, combine the ricotta cheese and cream cheese. Add honey, sugar, vanilla, nutmeg and zest. Add the eggs until combined. Sift in the flour and cornstarch. Pour onto puff pastry. If using one pastry sheet only pour out ½ of the cheese mixture.

Fruit Topping
2 lbs blood red oranges - slice two of the oranges and section the rest
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. honey (optional)

Thinly slice 1 or 2 of the oranges and set aside.  With  the rest of the oranges peel, removing the bitter pith (white part), seeds if any and section.  (Don't worry if the sections break up.) Place the sections in a sieve and allow most of the juice to drain off. The juice is amazing and the rich colour is exotic looking.  Drop the sections on the cheese mixture. Sprinkle about 2 tsp. of sugar on top.

I know these look like tomatoes but they really are oranges!
Bake for 15 minutes.

Remove pan from oven.  Brush on honey on the edges of the pastry to give the tart a bit of a shine.
Layer the orange slices on top. Sprinkle about 1 tsp. of sugar on top.
Bake for an additional 15 minutes or so.

Remove from oven when golden.

Slice and serve warm or cold.  My tart turned out only slightly sweet (which I was aiming for) allowing the sweetness of the oranges to shine.  It could even be served for a special breakfast....or an afterschool snack as that's what happened here.

Two dessert posts in one week.  I guess next week should be about salad and workouts. :)
Have a great weekend friends!


  1. Pretty--like citrus pizza! We tried Cara Cara oranges last year and fell in love with them. Thanks for reminding me about them. :)

  2. Oh, yummy, if the weather gets a bit better I am off to look for those today, I'm heading in the main course direction


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