How to Make Coeur à la Crème

The sweet richness of coeur à la crème reigns again

Here's a Valentine's treat that'll set you apart from the chocolate masses: coeur à la crème-a creamy white heart, surrounded, if you please, by raspberry sauce. This pretty, fresh cheese-based dessert is an old French classic that makes the "in list" every now and then, explaining why your mother or grandmother may remember it and you don't.

Certainly coeur à la crème is worth getting to know-the ingredients come together in minutes, and the fetching hearts require no baking. The hardest part is waiting, often overnight, while the mixture sets in a special heart-shaped basket or porcelain mold with holes in the bottom, which allow the whey to drain off (available from Dean & DeLuca). When it's ready, you need only invert the heart onto a serving plate and sauce it as you see fit.

Coeur à la crème requires a porcelain mold or basket with holes at the bottom so the whey can drain

Variations of coeur à la crème are endless. Any sweetened fresh cheese such as mascarpone, farmer's cheese, or cream cheese provides a delicious base. So in the sweet spirit of Valentine's Day, we pay a petite homage to this bonne bouche with a handful of recipes. Choose your preferred degree of creamy richness, and serve with the fruit you love best.

Coeur à la Crème Recipes from Masters of French Cuisine


Romantic Menu Planner

Take Our Quiz to Find a Customized Menu for You and Your Sweetheart

Valentine's Day Cooking with Chef Eric Ripert

Le Bernadin's Chef Shares Two Romantic Menus

Video: Baked with Love

Magnolia Bakery Shares its Irresistible Red Velvet Cupcake Recipe

Recipes for a Kiss

Nearly Fat-Free Confections That Speak From the Heart

Cupid in the Kitchen

Chefs Claudia Fleming and Gerry Hayden Demonstrate How to Make a Romantic Meal