Raspberry-Champagne Linzertorte “Hearts”

Linzertorte is a classic Austrian dessert that consists of a tart shell, an almond cake-like layer, and raspberry jam. I wanted to reinterpret that by embracing the almond and raspberry, while also introducing champagne to the mix! The end result were the little hearts that you see here. Special shout out to Shari or Spiced Up Mom for the heart shaped molds, they were gorgeous and I will cherish and love them forever! You can use whatever molds you want, but if you are trying to make these for Valentine’s Day, I recommend using heart shaped silicone petit gateau molds. Amazon has a ton of selections to choose from! Now for the actual recipe, we have an almond-champagne pate sucre(sweet pastry) crust, a champagne-raspberry mousse, a raspberry gelee layer on top of that, and some more of that almond pate sucre on top. Traditional linzertorte has a pastry lattice, so putting baked cookies made from the same crust that is on the bottom of the little mousse hearts was kind of my flimsy homage to that. I was pleasantly surprised by how the final dessert came out, just because I was still back and forth with a couple of the components, but overall, I would not change much for these little hearts(besides maybe doing a big heart cookie with a cutout on top, or maybe a lattice shaped heart cookie on top, but those are just the little details).

From a technical standpoint, this dessert is pretty straightforward. The crust and cookie garnishes are made from the same dough, and the raspberry mousse is made using the raspberry gelee as a base, so you really just need to focus on getting the dough baked correctly and the raspberry gelee made, and the rest of the dessert falls into place surprisingly quickly. I filled the hearts with an un-strained version of the gelee, since I love the aesthetic of the raspberry seeds, since that is reminiscent of linzertorte’s filling being a raspberry jam. I strained whatever gelee I did not freeze in little silicon sphere molds, reheated that with some gelatin and champagne, folded whipped cream into that mixture, and that’s how my raspberry-champagne mousse came together with surprisingly little extra effort! What I loved about these little linzertorte hearts are that they are 100% perfect for Valentine’s Day. That and fun fact, all of the raspberries I used in this recipe were hand picked by me and my friends when we went apple/raspberry picking(I won’t deny that I made this recipe MONTHS before Valentine’s Day 2023). A special thank you to Samantha Daily and Adrienne Sheh for being raspberry picking beasts, especially Sam, because we got a very full pint of raspberries from which I was able to use for this recipe!

For the raspberry gelee:
1 pint fresh raspberries
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp granulated sugar
a pinch of salt
2 tsp agar agar

In a pot, heat up everything on low heat until the raspberries are completely broken down, and everything is cooked into a thin jam. Pour enough of the mixture to fill 6 half-inch half sphere molds and then pass the remaining gelee through a strainer. Pour the strained gelee into the bottom of 6 heart-shaped petit gateau molds, filling each mold with about 1 tbsp of the gelee mixture and reserving the rest for your mousse. Freeze both the gelee cores and the heart layers solid.

For the champagne-raspberry mousse:
3oz raspberry gelee mixture
1 tsp gelatin powder + 2 tbsp water
1/4 cup champagne
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup heavy cream, whipped stiff

Melt down the gelee mixture, gelatin, champagne, and salt in a pot until completely dissolved together. Pour the mixture onto a flat surface and allow it to cool down to just above room temperature. Fold that mixture with the heavy cream to form your mousse. Pipe the mousse into your heart molds, and press in the gelee cores. Smooth out the tops and freeze solid.

For the pate sucre:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp almond flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp brown sugar
4 tbsp unsalted butter, diced and kept cold
1 tbsp champagne
1 tbsp almond milk
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

In a food processor, combine the flours, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Then pulse in the butter until just incorporated. Mix the remaining ingredients together and pour into the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined to form your dough. Refrigerate the dough for 10 minutes, then roll out the dough to about 1/16-inch thickness. Cut out heart shapes that are roughly the same shape as the mousse molds, as well as smaller hearts to garnish the tops with. Bake the dough at 375 degrees F for 12 minutes. Allow the dough to cool down.

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