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Ricotta Tart with Cranberries

Candied orange peel is available in many specialty-food shops. To make your own, remove the peels in strips from 2 oranges. Boil the peels in water for 5 minutes, drain and rinse. Boil 1 cup sugar with 1/2 cup water and 3 Tbs. light corn syrup, stirring. Add the peel and simmer for about 1 hour. Drain and let cool slightly on a wire rack, then roll in sugar.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 3 Tbs. Triple Sec or other orange-flavored liqueur
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped candied orange peel
  • Confectioners’ sugar for dusting (optional)

Directions:

Bake the pastry
Preheat an oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, combine the cranberries and liqueur and let stand until plumped, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the puff pastry sheet on a lightly floured work surface and roll out into a 16-by-12-inch rectangle. Transfer the rectangle to the prepared baking sheet, fold over the edges 1 inch to form a rim and pinch the edges decoratively. Freeze for 5 minutes, then bake, pricking the dough all over with a fork every 3 to 4 minutes, until lightly browned, 15 to 17 minutes.

Prepare the filling
Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine the ricotta, eggs, granulated sugar, cornstarch and vanilla and pulse until blended. Stir in the orange peel and the cranberries and liqueur. When the pastry shell is ready, remove it from the oven and carefully spread the filling evenly in the shell.

Bake the tart
Return the tart to the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Bake until the filling is barely puffed and set, about 15 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the tart cool completely. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Just before serving, dust the tart with confectioners’ sugar shaken through a sieve. Cut into squares and serve. Serves 10 to 12.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Baking, by Lou Seibert Pappas (Oxmoor House, 2006).