Creamy Tartlets – Three Ways

This post is especially for Robin, my wonderful sister-in-law who is hosting a large, lakeside fête in a few weeks.  She asked me to come up with a fun dessert that would serve a crowd.  I personally wanted to combine a classy look with an incredibly easy and quick recipe.

So, I borrowed the marshmallow and milk/cream base from my No-Bake Chocolate Hazelnut Pie, and added raspberries, lemon curd, and semisweet chocolate to make creamy tartlets – three ways.

Creamy Tartlets – Three Ways
Serves 16+ people.

1 cup of milk or cream (I used half n’ half here)
32 large marshmallows or approx 120 mini marshmallows
1-2 packages of shortbread tartlet shells (I had only one box, which is 16 shells, but you will have plenty of leftover fillings)
1 pkg of fresh raspberries, washed (about 20 berries)
2/3 cup of semisweet chocolate chips
3 heaping tablespoons of lemon curd
about 3 cups of whipped cream

sliced almonds, finely chopped pecans, finely chopped pistachios, chocolate shavings, powdered sugar, fresh raspberries, mint leaves, lemon peel or zest, crushed lemon candy bits…or anything else you like!

Heat the half n’ half in a large saucepan with the marshmallows, stirring often to prevent sticking or burning.  Cook the mixture over medium heat until the marshmallows have melted into the milk/cream.  The result is a frothy, white mix.

Divide the frothy mixture into three portions, each about 3/4 of a cup, in separate mixing bowls.

Add the chocolate chips to one bowl.  Whisk to combine until the chocolate chips are melted, shiny, and smooth.

Add the lemon curd to another bowl.  I love a very tart (no pun intended) lemon flavor, but if you prefer a milder flavor, add a bit of sugar for sweetness!  Whisk to combine the curd with the marshmallow cream until the result is smooth, and buttery yellow.

Then, mash about 15 fresh raspberries with the back of a spoon and add the fruit mixture to the final bowl.  Whisk vigorously to combine the fruit bits with the marshmallow cream, trying to get the resulting raspberry filling as smooth as possible.  You could also puree the raspberries in a blender or food processor.  See note, and photo below.

Allow each filling to cool completely.

Once the fillings have cooled, fold about 1 cup of whipped cream into each bowl finishing the raspberry, lemon, and chocolate fillings.

Place the fillings in the fridge to set for at least 2 hours.

When you are ready to assemble, unwrap the tartlets.  Pipe the fillings into each shell using a pastry bag outfitted with a piping tip or a plastic food storage bag with a tiny hole cut in one corner.

A chocolate tartlet. I really enjoy the taste of the semisweet chocolate, it's not overly sweet and has a subtle bitterness to it.

A raspberry tartlet. The filling is delicious, but needs thickening. See the note at the bottom of the post!

A lemon tartlet. This was my favorite, and mon mari's too - which is quite an accomplishment since he normally hates lemon!

Garnish each tartlet and serve.

All sixteen tartlets, ready to party!

**Important Cooking Note:  The one thing I would change about this recipe is that the raspberry mixture was a bit watery, so I would substitute raspberry jam instead of the real fruit in the future, and just use the berries to garnish.