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105degrees, L2/W2/D1-2: strawberry tarts

December 8, 2010

Why am I packing two days into one post? Well, it feels like I have less than usual to show you. We’re working a lot this week on a couple class projects, which I can’t say much about until a later time, so our finished dishes have been few and far between.

We did start some infused oil, though. Mine’s a curry oil. (Sound familiar?)

We’ve also got several batches of nut cheese fermenting.

For dinner last night, I made myself an impromptu bowl of sesame noodles.

I included kelp noodles, red pepper, carrots, slighty marinated mushrooms, cashews, sesame seeds, and cilantro. The sauce was a hodgepodge of almond butter, coconut aminos, sesame oil, lime juice, garlic, ginger, and more.

Today, we did get to complete one full dish.

We made tart crusts and whipped up a batch of a mascarpone-like raw cheese.

The end result? Raw strawberry mascarpone tartlets!

We made a quick strawberry sauce with which to decorate our plates.

It’s not exactly strawberry season, but that doesn’t mean this wasn’t a refreshing dessert.

The nutty crust is a great complement to the sweet, creamy filling.

For my second plating, I utilized a balsamic vinegar reduction we’d made yesterday.

Pretty wild, eh? Haylee really liked this plating.

The way I lay the strawberries on this rectangular tart reminds me a little of my open-faced chocolate strawberry sandwich.

The tangy mascarpone has an almost cheesecake-like flavor, rendering the strawberry topping all the more taste-tastic.

Let’s just say…I’m glad we made two servings.

52 Comments leave one →
  1. December 8, 2010 12:41 am

    The tartlets look so good. Has the marscapone had any time to ferment at all? I’ve been enjoying your blog posts. I wish I could get fired up to post more but I’m too busy making dishes to post about them.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:19 am

      You could ferment the mascarpone, but we actually took a shortcut by blending an already-fermented ingredient into it πŸ™‚

      Hey, that happens to the best of us with posting – if you’re happier in the kitchen right now, there’s no reason to stress out about producing posts!

  2. December 8, 2010 1:00 am

    WOAH these tarts look INSANE! you are so great at photography too!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:19 am

      Aw, thank you! My photos have come a LONG way in the two and a half years since I started this blog πŸ™‚ And even just in the last few months!

  3. December 8, 2010 5:08 am

    The tarts looks delicious, and both of your presentations are something to be proud of, too! They are truly beautiful πŸ™‚ The crust sounds delicious, too – something I need to try, for sure!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:22 am

      Thank you, dear! I ended up happy with both πŸ˜€ The crust was almond-packed and delicious!

  4. December 8, 2010 5:57 am

    Firstly, I’ve never met anyone besides me who uses the word hodgepodge before. *high five* Secondly, that balsamic plating is so trippy that it’s pretty much the best thing ever. Thirdly, I love the offhand way you describe making, and the contents of, your kelp dish. I would sell my fancy boots in order to get that for dinner tomorrow! For realz, totes.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:25 am

      *high five back*
      Glad you like the drizzley plating!
      I guess I did talk awfully breezily about the kelp noodles, heh. You know I would’ve loved to share it with you! Seems like kelp noodles would be something available in Australia…no such luck?

  5. December 8, 2010 7:50 am

    I really want that tart. I wonder what that marscapone is made from? πŸ˜‰ I also like your plating. So beautiful!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:26 am

      Hehe, well, the main ingredient is soaked cashews!
      Happy to hear you liked my platings! πŸ˜€

  6. December 8, 2010 9:58 am

    beautiful tarts! i love that drizzling all over the plate!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:30 am

      Thanks Rachel! πŸ™‚

  7. December 8, 2010 12:06 pm

    omg that tartlet looks amazing!! Great job! I want some!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:30 am

      Hehe, thank you!

  8. December 8, 2010 1:08 pm

    The pictures of the tarts are amazing! Yum!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:31 am

      Thanks Aimee! πŸ˜€

  9. December 8, 2010 1:24 pm

    Gorgeous! Really craving sweets now…

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:32 am

      That’s usually how I’m feeling too πŸ˜›

  10. December 8, 2010 1:29 pm

    Beautiful work. You have a keen eye for colorful, attractive presentation. You could make a bowl of mud look appetizing.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:33 am

      Thanks mom. You won’t likely see me trying to prettify a bowl of mud anytime soon, but it’s nice to hear I’d be good at it! πŸ™‚

  11. December 8, 2010 2:32 pm

    Wow. This is incredible! You have mastered the art of plating, I’d say! Those strawberry tarts look soooooooo good!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:34 am

      Aw, you think so? Thank you so much! That makes me feel awesome. πŸ˜€

  12. December 8, 2010 2:50 pm

    Your plating skills are advancing so quickly. You’re already looking like a raw food master. Imagine how crazy awesome you’ll be by the end of this course!!!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:35 am

      Thanks so much, Jill! ::beams:: I hope I can translate all this into a career soon where others think the same of me!

  13. December 8, 2010 4:24 pm

    Great comment from your mom! And not one but two ‘hodgepodge-sayers’! I feel in good company.

    I think it’s awesome that you don’t hold yourself to posting every day. That’s not what it’s about. And it’s good to take a break sometimes. Great to see what you’ve been up to, though. I, too am curious about that mascarpone. Never been a cheese lover, especially not of hard cheese, but I can see the appeal of raw, fermenty cheeses.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:46 am

      The best company πŸ™‚

      As we’ve been spending so much time lately on lecture, research, and extended class projects, I realized I just couldn’t pressure myself to post daily. I’d rather have really great content every other day and half-assed daily posts.

      The mascarpone was a liiittle on the tangy side for my tastes, but with a small tweak to the recipe, it would have tasted perfect to me!

  14. Michelle permalink
    December 8, 2010 4:47 pm

    Love your plating on the second one. It has great texture–looks like tree bark. (I love faux bois!)

    I also wanted to comment that I was near a Noodles & Co yesterday (I live in Chicago), so I had it for the first time. Got your favorite, it was good! Thanks for the recommendation πŸ™‚

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:47 am

      It DOES look a little like tree bark! Good call πŸ™‚

      That’s great that you got to try Noods & Co! LOVE those Japanese Pan Noodles…yum!

  15. December 8, 2010 9:10 pm

    Wow that tart looks good. I like the rectangle pan. I need to get one of those too. I always get scared of things like balsamic with dessert but I trust you gourmet chefs to know best! When you spread the sauce all over the plate you are just encouraging plate-licking. πŸ™‚

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:48 am

      I liked the pan too. I need to get myself a full set of mini tart pans with removable bottoms, in fact.

      Balsamic reductions never used to be my thing, but I’ve come to appreciate them πŸ™‚

  16. wolfenstein permalink
    December 9, 2010 4:01 am

    wow! good made for strawberry… is look delicious !

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 15, 2010 11:49 am

      Hehe, thanks!

  17. December 9, 2010 7:20 am

    So much goodness going on here! The tarts (and especially the tart crusts) look amazing! I love your plating with the balsamic reduction. I’m also super intrigued by the almond butter sauce you made for your dinner salad–I’ve made plenty of peanut sauce variations, but I’ve never tried one with almond butter. Sounds wonderful πŸ™‚

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:33 pm

      The crusts were almondy and delicious πŸ™‚ Speaking of almond, almond butter is surprisingly versatile in Asian foods. It doesn’t give the same flavor punch as PB, but its mild presence adds a wonderful, nutty backnote.

  18. December 9, 2010 3:53 pm

    That tart looks great. I was thinking how good everything sounded, but when I got to the tart, I forgot about everything else. :o)

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:33 pm

      A good dessert SHOULD have that very effect! πŸ˜›

  19. December 9, 2010 7:47 pm

    Those tarts look amazing! I don’t they’d survive five seconds near me.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:35 pm

      You’d think their small size lent inherent portion control, but…not so much. πŸ˜‰

  20. December 9, 2010 10:18 pm

    food looks amazing as usual. Its hard to believe its all raw!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:35 pm

      Thanks, Kate! What a compliment! πŸ˜€

  21. December 10, 2010 2:43 am

    Oh yum! your food always looks mindbogglingly good πŸ™‚
    What’s been your favourite dish at culinary school so far?

  22. December 10, 2010 12:59 pm

    Oh, I love the plates so much!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:40 pm

      Hehe, thanks Jenny!

  23. December 10, 2010 1:09 pm

    Such pretty photos! Looks delicious!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:40 pm

      Thank you, Kayla! πŸ˜€

  24. December 11, 2010 4:49 am

    I die for those noodles. AND I LOVE the second plating too. The choc sauce looks like it’s part of the plate. Beautiful. Strawberries ARE in season here in Australia and I am lapping them up!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:42 pm

      Actually, it was a balsamic vinegar reduction. It does look awfully chocolatey though, doesn’t it?

      I’m very envious of your weather right now! πŸ™‚ Enjoy those berries!

  25. December 11, 2010 10:47 am

    you have to post recipes!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:43 pm

      Aw, I wish I could, but this recipe belongs to 105degrees! I will, however, be finding ways to share my OWN newly-developed raw recipes once class ends. πŸ˜‰

  26. December 11, 2010 12:05 pm

    Wow! Keep up the good work and thanks so much for sharing your beautiful dishes. Are you going to share some recipes?

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      December 19, 2010 9:45 pm

      Thanks, Jane! I can’t share 105degrees’ recipes, but I’ve developed quite a few of my own along the way, which I will be sharing in some form or another down the line.

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