Foodbuzz 24×24: Great Berry Desserts Class and Raspberry Milk Chocolate Truffle Tart Recipe


May 1, 2011 by Dana

Many people probably don’t think of summer as dessert season.  More likely, “dessert season” is associated with months like November and December, with holiday cookies, pies, and cakes taking over people’s stomaches kitchens.

But, for me, summer is the time of year that I find myself baking and dessert making the most.  During the summer months, my friends and I make any excuse to get together for an outdoor BBQ, a day by the pool, or a tailgate party.  Since there are many good cooks in our group, we are never at a loss for food, no matter what the occasion.

Of course, no gathering is complete without a delicious sweet treat to round off the day.  That’s where I come in.

Since my mother taught me never to arrive empty handed, and so many of our dessert needs fall in the summer, I would love to have a reliable repertoire of sweet berry desserts to choose from to bring to parties and events in the upcoming summer months.

Luckily, through Foodbuzz’s April 24×24, I was able to attend last  night’s “Great Berry Desserts” class at the Institute of Culinary Education.  I was thrilled to participate in the class along with my friend Jill.

Course Description:

“ICE’s Director of Baking Nick Malgieri created this course as a celebration of the always versatile berries. Whether you pair these versatile fruits with chocolate or nuts, prepare them in cheesecakes or in tarts, bake or whip them, you will love everything you learn in this class and use the recipes over and over again. Your menu will consist of Old-Fashioned Blackberry Jam Cake; Blackberry Cheesecake (no bake); Blueberry Crumbcake Squares; Blueberry and Walnut Tart; Strawberry Chantilly Cake; Strawberry and Balsamic Panna Cotta; Raspberry Milk Chocolate Truffle Tart; and Raspberry Devil’s food Cake.”

Class Experience:

The class began with Melanie, our instructor and berry dessert maker extraordinare, conducting introductions and talking us through the nuances of each recipe.  Then we were told to pair up, and each group chose two of the recipes to make.  Jill and I chose to try our hands at the Strawberry Chantilly Cake and the Raspberry Milk Chocolate Truffle Tart. After Melanie showed us the correct way to measure the flour (by spooning the flour into the measuring cup and then leveling off the top with an offset spatula, rather than scooping with the measuring cup itself), we got to work.

We started by making the dough for the tart and refrigerating it until it was ready to be rolled out.  Then we made the cakes for the strawberry cake and the strawberry filling.  We had time to spare while we waited for the cakes to bake, so we made the Panna Cotta with Strawberries and Balsamic Vinegar  in the meantime.  I was glad we added the panna cotta to our menu, because it called for a vanilla bean, which I have obviously heard of, but never used myself.  Melanie did an impromptu demonstration on how to use the bean.

Vanilla Bean Demonstration

1. Cut off the ends of the bean.
2. Cut the bean in half lengthwise.
3. Scrape the seeds out with the blade of the knife.

The rest of the class was spent finishing our dishes and, of course, tasting the results.  In addition to tasting our own creations, some of the other participants in the class were kind enough to share some of theirs as well.  After each bite of a new dessert I happily proclaimed “this is amazing!” Clearly, I found the reliable berry dessert repertoire I was looking for.

Raspberry Milk Chocolate Truffle Tart Recipe

Chocolate Pastry Dough

1 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons alkalized (Dutch Process) cocoa
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
5 tablespoons (2.5 oz) unsalted butter
1 large egg


1/3 cup water
1/4 cup of sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
8 ounces milk chocolate, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
3 eggs
3/4 cup (about 7 oz) mascarpone cheese
1 basket fresh raspberries


For the dough, combine dry ingredients in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade.  Pulse to mix.  Cut butter into 10 pieces, add to work bowl, and pulse until fully mixed in.   Add egg and pulse until dough forms a ball. Wrap and chill dough until ready to bake the tart.  

*Tip from Melanie: The dough should be refrigerated for at least one hour, but should ideally be chilled overnight.  

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and set a rack in the lowest level.  Knead chilled dough slightly until maliable, then form into a disk, flour dough surface, and roll dough to fit pan.  Sever excess dough at rim of pan and press dough well into pan.  

*Tip from Melanie: To roll out dough in a circle, place the dough between two pieces of parchment paper.  Picture the dough as a clock, and roll to 12, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10.  Continue this pattern until finished.  The surface of the dough should be smooth.  If ti is bumpy, you can gently smooth it by rubbing the parchment paper with your hand.

For the filling, bring water and sugar to a boil in a non-reactive saucepan.  Add butter and continue to cook until butter is melted.  Off heat, add chocolate, and allow to stand for 2 minutes, then whisk smooth.  

Whisk together the eggs and mascarpone cheese, then whisk in the chocolate mixture. 

Arrange the raspberries onthe crust.  Pour the filling into the crust and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the dough is baked through and the filling is set.  

*Tip from Melanie: You can serve this tart cold or at room temperature, but it should be stored in the fridge. 

33 thoughts on “Foodbuzz 24×24: Great Berry Desserts Class and Raspberry Milk Chocolate Truffle Tart Recipe

  1. Veronica says:

    I see you’re quickly working your way to checking another thing off your list of 27 things–taking food classes! I love the sound of this truffle tart!! I’ve made one similar, but with semisweet chocolate and a raspberry sauce mixed in (a Rose Levy Beranbaum recipe). So I know this has to be good! I think anything with the word “truffle” in the title has to be god. :)

  2. What an awesome class and scrumptious tart!

  3. January says:

    i love cooking and baking classes and your choice of a proposal for the FB24x24 is really great :) and look at all those desserts! they all look yummy and they’re making me drool :)

  4. Dana says:

    Congrats on 24×24 Great post! :)

  5. Say what?! I love making desserts in the warmer months too! I love your tart. Looks absolutely delish.

  6. Excellent post today! I really enjoyed it. I enjoy making great food for my family and friends when they come over for entertainment. Food can also be entertaining in itself. Thanks again for sharing this.

    A Delicious Coffee Roll Recipe

  7. That tart sounds fantastic! I don’t bake as much during the summer, but I make up for it eating frozen yogurt and ice cream:-)

  8. Liz says:

    Gorgeous, gorgeous tart! We eat dessert every month of the year and anything chocolate makes its way to the top of the list! I hope you’ll share the cake recipe, too…it also looks incredible!

  9. Faith says:

    What a fun class this must have been! Your pictures are gorgeous and the desserts all look really fantastic!

  10. RavieNomNoms says:

    Dana it is gorgeous!! I have to agree with your dessert comment. I think that desserts are a year round treat and not just in the winter months. During the summer they just end up being loaded with lots of fruits…and yours just shows that beautifully! Looks so delicious!

  11. All of your desserts look scrumptious and beautiful. It sounds like such a worthwhile and fun class.

  12. Kelly says:

    This looks incredibly delicious and so pretty! :)

  13. That looks delicious! I would love to take a cooking course.

  14. Lynne says:

    now you’ve started me thinking that I want to take some classes. They see like SO much fun!
    Also, thank you so very much for the comments that you’re leaving. They mean the world to me and I’m so happy to read them! Sometimes it makes me think you’re the only one reading. Haha

  15. I love everything about this tart, Dana! It’s so beautiful, and I bet delicious, and it looks like you learned a lot from the class. Thanks for sharing!

  16. What a great idea for 24×24 – love it!

  17. Reeni says:

    I think of summer as dessert time too – with all the fresh fruits available! The class sounds so fun. Thanks for sharing all these great tips with us! The desserts look scrumptious!

  18. jodiemomo says:

    How exciting! The desserts look delicious! I bet the class was so much fun. How great that you got to go!

  19. Joanne says:

    My life is dessert season.

    My life is also greatly in need of some chocolate raspberry mousse heaven. AKA this tart. Amazing!

  20. Glad you got this fun experience! It’s great that culinary schools offer these great classes for people who want to learn more in the kitchen without going all out for a culinary degree. Your desserts look wonderful :)

  21. Kristen says:

    I envy you the opportunity to go to such a neat class. Those berry desserts sound phenomenal. How fun for you!!

  22. Danelle says:

    Do you think my husband could make this for Mother’s day? :) Probably not, but it looks delicious. I’ll just have to do it myself!

  23. Beth says:

    That is one spectacular dessert. Bookmarked!

  24. What a fun class! And, you chose two great desserts. Chocolate and raspberries is a great combination.

  25. How fun to take that class and I agree got to have dessert with the bbq too.

  26. i love making desserts year round LOL but my favorite is the fresh fruit season.
    the cooking class looks like fun, never been to one although I’d love to.
    Congrats on FoodBuzz 24X24

  27. Joy says:

    It looks like you have fun!

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