Charise's "Pie"

I call it a pie, but it's really a fresh berry tart. My friend Charise loves pie, and I wanted to name something after her. I guess this will have to do. (Sorry, Charise!)

For the crust I used a sweet pastry dough recipe from . It's not earth-shattering, just a basic pastry dough. You can try using lard for a lighter crust, or a combo of the two.

For the filling:

15 ounces of whole milk ricotta cheese*
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pint of fresh raspberries, washed and drained well

Make the crust ahead of time and let it chill in the fridge for a few hours. In a large bowl, mix ricotta cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract until fluffy. Fill crust with cheese mixture and add raspberries. **Add a glaze if desired. Place in fridge and allow to set for at least three hours before serving.

* A note about ricotta cheese: try to use a creamy ricotta rather than a dry one. If you can get it fresh from a farmer's market or organic, then choose that over the regular store-bought variety. It should whip up like a heavy cream, smooth and silky. If you do find that the ricotta cheese is too dry, add about 1/4 to 1/3 cup of cream or whole milk.

**A note about glazes: you can make a glaze with either a 1/2 cup of fruit liquor or juice, heating it in a sauce pan, and adding 1 teaspoon of corn starch. I'm not really into corn starch, so I sometimes just heat up about 1/4-1/3 cup of fruit jam or preserves and then pour it gently on the "pie" before placing it in the fridge.