When making raspberry filling, chefs may use real raspberries that have not been packed in syrup, and use them alone or with preserves, to create a signature dessert filling. There are many ways to make this type of filling, and the technique chosen will often depend on the top of dessert with which it is being paired, and the overall effect the chef wishes to create. Real raspberries are frequently chosen to make glaze-like confections that drizzle over and through desserts. Pre-made preserves and jams may be chosen to create a thicker filling that may be spread between layers of baked confections.
To make a raspberry filling that resembles a glaze, chefs should begin with fresh or frozen berries that have not been packed in syrup. The berries may be combined with water, sugar to taste, and lemon juice to bring out the flavor, and boiled on top of the oven for several minutes until the fruit has begun to break apart. This mixture can be strained and combined with cornstarch to thicken. The result is a thick and syrupy glaze that may be used as a filling for cakes and doughnuts, or as a topping for other desserts, like cheesecake. This type of glaze may be thinned further by stirring it frequently during the cooling phase.
Real raspberries, fresh or frozen and thawed before use, may be combined with raspberry or red currant jam to create a more stiff raspberry filling filling. This technique typically does not require the addition of lemon juice or sugar to bring out the natural sweetness of the berries. The ratio of preserves to fresh fruit is usually one part to two parts, respectively. Other jam flavors may be used to create unique fillings that compliment the taste of the raspberries, or the flavor of the desserts with which they are served.
Those who wish to use only fresh fruits, and do not desire a glaze or thick filling, can combine raspberries with icing. A thick layer of icing or cream cheese can be spread over the bottom layer of the intended dessert. Fresh or thawed raspberries may then be dripped and pressed heavily into this icing layer before topping with the final layer of dessert. Frozen, thawed raspberries tend to work best when creating this type of raspberry filling as the thawed fruit holds less shape than its fresh counterpart. Frozen berries often require a few tablespoons of sugar and lemon juice to be sprinkled over them prior to use, to recapture their full flavor.