Sure, summer is all about backyard barbecues and grilled meats. But you have to have a game plan for dessert. I’m always an advocate for homemade ice cream (beer-ified version will be coming your way on the eHow food blog soon), but it takes some advanced planning.
Sometimes you just don’t have that kind of time. This is a tart that can pulled off in just 30 minutes and uses what I almost always have on hand. I always keep a stash of puff pastry in the freezer in case of last minute entertaining. Apples are always in my house, as is beer, and the times I don’t have mascarpone cheese, I substitute cream cheese.
It’s a quick and easy entertaining solution that is fancy enough to pretend like you spent all day on it.
Beer Poached Apple and Honey Mascarpone Tart
- 1 sheet puff pastry
- 4 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and cored (about 1.5 lbs)
- 3 cups malty pale ale beer
- 1 cup white sugar
- 2 cups water
- 8 wt oz. mascarpone cheese
- 1/3 cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon flakey sea salt (such as Maldon)
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Roll out puff pastry on a lightly floured surface.
- Transfer puff pastry to a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.
- Lightly score a 1 inch boarder around the puff pastry. Prink the inside of the scored area multiple times.
- Bake at 400 until lightly golden brown, 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven, allow to cool.
- While the puff pastry is cooking, start the apples.
- Bring 3 cups beer and white sugar to a low simmer. Gently add the apples, cover with enough hot water that the apples float, about 2 cups.
- Simmer until fork tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Do not over poach or apples will become mushy.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and place on paper towels, allow to drain and cool.
- In a small bowl stir together the mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla extract.
- Spread the puff pastry with mascarpone mixture, inside the scored boarder.
- Slice the cooled apples, arrange on an even layer on top of the mascarpone.
- Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with salt just prior to serving.
Photo credit: Jackie Dodd