Ricotta and honey torte with scorched honey grapes


Here is a simply superb honey ricotta torte topped with grapes cooked in verjuice and honey until syrupy. There is so much to love about this as a dessert and even non-dessert lovers have been tempted to try a slice. The hazelnut pastry provides that wonderful flavour balance to the filling. This is a large cake and comfortably serves 10-12.

Ricotta and honey torte with scorched honey grapes

40g sultanas

80ml verjuice

1.2 kg firm ricotta

250g mascarpone

3 eggs

100g honey

60g pure icing sugar

Finely grated rind of 1 orange and 1 lemon

Scraped seeds of 1 vanilla bean

Hazelnut pastry

50g roast hazelnuts

200g plain flour

60g pure icing sugar, sieved

120g cold butter, cubed

1/2 lightly beaten egg

Scorched honey grapes

165g honey

60ml verjuice

250g seedless red grapes

For hazelnut pastry, process hazelnuts in a food processor until coarsely chopped, add flour and icing sugar, process to combine. Add butter, process until crumbs form, add egg, process to combine. Bring together with the heel of your hand, form into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap, refrigerate to rest for 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 180C. Roll pastry on a lightly floured surface to 4mm thick, cut a 23cm diameter round and line base of a 6cm-deep, 23cm diameter ring mould placed on an oven tray and lined with baking paper. Prick with a fork and bake until crisp and golden (10-12 minutes). Reduce oven to 160C.
Meanwhile simmer sultanas and verjuice in a small saucepan over medium heat until liquid evaporates (5-6 minutes), then set aside to cool.  Process ricotta, mascarpone, eggs, honey, icing sugar, rinds and vanilla seeds in a food processor until smooth, then stir through sultanas. Spoon over pastry base, smooth top and bake until golden and set (1-1.25 hours) Cool, refrigerate until chilled.
Meanwhile, for scorched grapes, simmer honey in a frying pan over medium-high heat until caramelised, swirling occasionally (3-4 minutes). Add verjuice, swirl to combine, add grapes and cook until syrupy (5-7 minutes). Cool to room temperature.
Transfer torte to a serving plate, and spoon over the grape mixture and serve.
Wine suggestion – A late harvest Riesling or Botrytis Semillon.



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