Sunday, February 28, 2010

Culinary Olympics 2010, Ricotta Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake

Ricotta Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake

 I have another great event from our very active group, BloggerAid- Changing the Face of Famine, in which we are celebrating the Canadian 2010 edition of the Winter Olympics with a round of recipes and stories to mark this grand occasion. The round up will be posted March 5 at BACFF. You'll want to check out the offerings and stories from the Olympics from around the world.  

Also a reminder that the highly successful  BloggerAid Cookbook is now on sale. All proceeds go directly to the School Meals Program a division of the World Food Programme and the United Nations. Purchase your copy today and help kids around the world have access to an education and nutritious meals every day.

For us here in Italy we are proud of all our Italian  participants and especially so for the medalists in Luge, Nordic combined, cross country and short track, but the cheer for the gold in Slalom, by RAZZOLI Giuliano last night was deafening. Well, at least at our house, it was. This 25 year old young skier broke the drought  for medals in the downhill category that has been ongoing since Alberto Tomba retired from his domination of this spot. Guiliano grew up a short distance from where Tomba grew up and I would imagine he probably grew up with him as an idol and a goal to reach. There was even talk of him not being sent with the team to Vancouver and so I imagine his victory is even all that more sweet. It actually brought tears to the great Alberto Tombas eyes when they announced him as the winner last night. It was a special moment. We awoke this morning to learn that one of our friends from the 2006 games, whose nephew was competing in the Bobsled, who went home empty handed then, was rewarded with gold yesterday in Vancouver as well. We're so happy for Steven Halcomb and his team and family. They also broke a drought for the Americans that I think they said stretched back over 60 years. That's a long time to wait  and again, must be very sweet indeed. We salute all of the competitors and their families, as it requires a lot of sacrifice, effort and support for an athlete to reach their goals and compete in the Olympics. 
Well done everyone!
I'm offering this  not too sweet treat as a contender for the Culinary Olympics 2010 as an Italian entry.


Ricotta Mascarpone Swirl Torte

Ingredients:

250g Ricotta cheese, (optional-put through a fine strainer for a creamier texture) (9-12oz)
250g Mascarpone cheese, amount depends on what container size you can find 8-9 0z)
128g confectioner (icing, powdered) sugar (4.5 oz 1/2 c)
2 Eggs, separated
Zest of 2- 3 oranges depending on size of oranges, chopped fine, or use a microplane zester
1 Tb Vanilla extract or seeds from two vanilla pods

Chocolate swirl

100 g  (3.5- oz) Chocolate, bittersweet, chopped 
118 g heavy cream (1/2c)

1 pasta frolla 10-12" crust, partially baked, or several small tartlette size

Method:

Place the chopped chocolate and heavy cream in a double boiler or a medium sized metal bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  Place the bowl on top of a smaller metal bowl or saucepan with hot simmering water. You don’t want anything to boil, just heat the water to melt the chocolate. 
Once all is melted, whisk till smooth, being careful not to over mix. Set aside over the hot water, with the heat turned off, but while the water is still warm.

Sift the powder sugar through the strainer into a medium sized bowl.
Add the ricotta, strained or unstrained.
Add the mascarpone cheese. 
Add the egg yolks, vanilla, orange zest and blend.
Whip the egg whites till frothy and homogeneous, but not firm.
Gently mix in.
Pour into a partially baked 10 inch or pasta frolla crust.
Once the filling is added, smooth the surface. 
Stir gently and smooth your chocolate mixture 
Pour chocolate in a circular pattern around the perimeter of the tart to make a bull eyes pattern. If your chocolate seems too thick, add a bit more cream to make it swirlable.
Drag a knife across from center to outer sides of the crust, to make the swirls. You can also make random drips of the chocolate ganache instead of the bulls eye for a different look. 
Bake at 325* in a preheated oven till just slightly set. 
Cool and slightly chill. 
Serve with fresh fruit or chocolate  or caramel sauce.
The crust will be soggy if left overnight.


 You can find  a recipe for the pasta frolla crust recipe from my Peach crostata recipe here
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