It is probably no news that I love berries, lemons, and mascarpone, but what I love when two bloggers give me the chance to put them together. Lisa from La Mia Cucina and Kelly from Sass & Veracity got together and concoted a Salad Extravaganza event in their quest to shrink their hips and thighs.
I first thought about doing a simple fruit salad with a drizzle of honey and lemon juice, maybe a dollop of barely sweetened whipped cream. However, after several email exchanges with Lisa and her desire to keep the taste and bang factor while watching what she eats, I wanted to share with her that one can keep that “wow” factor by using regular ingredients but decreasing the portion size. I too have had my battle with my thighs and over the years I have found out that they respond well the old “quality over quantity” phrase (although I have been known to have my cake and eat it too!).
I first tried yuzu in a tart purchased from the amazing pastry chef Sadaharu Aoki while in Paris last Christmas. How to describe the taste? Sometimes it is like a grapefruit or a perky tangerine in your mouth, sometimes it has a lemon kick to it, the kind that makes you gums go “ouyee” overall it just is plain good if you love citrus! I cannot find fresh yuzu fruits here but thanks to the internet the juice is easily accesible.
These “verrines” are a dessert we have often as it is light and tasty, easy to put together and extremely refreshing. Don’t tell be but I even enjoy a few spoonful in the morning before my run. With the yuzu juice, I make a simple (lower calorie) curd that I layer with a mascarpone cream spiked with lemon zest. The berries don’t really need anything else as you dip your spoon and mix them with the creams.
Berry Salad on Yuzu and Mascarone Creams:
For the yuzu curd:
2/3 cup yuzu juice
1/3 cup sugar
Combine the sugar and juice in a saucepan, and bring to a simmer.
In a small bowl, beat the eggs until light.
Beat some of the yuzu mixture into the eggs to temper. Scrape the mixture back into the saucepan and cook stirring constantly until it thickens up, about 5 minutes.Strain and refrigerate, covered with plastic wrap until ready to use.
For the mascarpone cream:
8 oz mascarpone, at room temp
1/4 cup powdered sugar
grated zest of one lemon
Mix all the ingredients together and keep at room temperatue, it will be easier to layer.
For the mixed berry salad:
1 cup cut up fresh strawberries
1 pint fresh raspberries
1 pint fresh blueberries
To assemble: layer the yuzu curd and mascarpone cream in glasses or cups and top with a generous amount of the mixed berry salad.