Pizza Lab #20: Raspberry Tart Pizza
One of my favorite pastimes of the Summer is eating fruit straight off the bushes at my parents’ house. I could make a quick breakfast or even lunch just out of foraging around the yard. And no, they don’t live in some remote backwoods town deep within the Ozarks, they live right here in Patchogue on Long Island. The suburbs. 10 minutes away from a frigging Wal-mart. But! There’s everything ranging from blueberries to raspberries to apples to pears growing there; their property is a lesson on the virtues of planting edible landscaping when you finally own a home. Of course that’s an article for a different time, but for now we’ll dive into this edition of Pizza Lab, which was fashioned from the fresh, organic, homegrown raspberries I bring up.
For a few months now, Meg A. and I had the idea to make up some sort of tart-like pizza that uses freshly picked fruit. Like many real pies, this pizza started off with the fruit filling. As mentioned, the seasonal favorite, raspberries, were chosen to be the star here since raspberry is one of the more popular varieties of tarts. The filling was easy enough to make, simply being a combination of fresh berries, corn starch, sugar, and lime juice. While it tasted yummy, admittedly it resembles the aftermath of a train VS pedestrian accident.
The rest of the pizza was pretty straightforward. Once the filling was made we spooned it onto the dough, and baked it. Considering most fruit pies or tarts bake with the filling right from the get go, we didn’t bother parcooking this one. Even so there’s enough sugar in the filling for it to caramelize into a nice gel.
While we usually opt for mascarpone in our dessert pizzas, this time we ended up using plain old whipped cream, made from scratch. Mascarpone tastes great and works really well on these sweet pies, but we don’t want Pizza Lab to become formulaic, now do we. Besides, whipped cream and fruit pie go together perfectly. After baking the pie and filling together, we removed the pizza, let it cool, and added on heaps of whipped cream.
Unsurprisingly, this pizza ended up tasting like a plain-ass raspberry tart. Considering it’s called a Raspberry Tart Pizza, I guess that’s a victory of sorts. Hooray, go us? But seriously don’t get me wrong, the pizza wasn’t bad; it really was quite good. But like a couple of past experiments, it just didn’t gain anything from its transformation into a pizza. Flavor wise, there’s no discernible difference. Amazingly, there was almost little texture difference too from a real pie. Obviously this dough is a bit chewier, but fresh out of the oven it had a crispness that regular pie crusts have. The one thing to take away though, unlike other Pizza Labs where this was an issue due to the pizza being a challenge to make, and it boiling down to “really, don’t bother”, the Raspberry Tart Pizza was actually pretty easy. As mentioned it was incredibly simple. Mix berries, spread on pie, bake, apply whipped cream. That’s all it took. Because of that, I feel like it was worthwhile, if only just because it’s about the same effort of making a real pie, if not less even.
Delightful Dessert Doppleganger