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Mascarpone substitute?

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Is there a healthier alternative to mascarpone? Giada has a fantastic recipe for Chicken with Mustard Mascarpone Marsala Sauce (can't rave about it enough!) but due to the mascarpone the fat/calorie content is over the top, something like 120 calories per tablespoon and 13.5 grams of fat. I get chest pains just reading the recipe.

I'd like to make this great recipe again; is there a substitute that will lend a similar taste/texture to the dish and that won't shorten the lifespan of my guests?

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  1. you could use low fat sour cream or yogurt and get the same results. i just checked out her recipe and a cup of mascarpone is a LOT! i'm not sure what the thickness of the final dish is supposed to be, but any of those white liquids (sour cream, yogurt, heavy cream ) would most likely work.

    or you could experiment to see how little mascarpone you can get away with using without compromising the dish.

    i wonder, does creme fraiche have less calories?

    1. You could try low fat cream cheese--the neufchatel.

      5 Replies
      1. re: chowser

        Exactly, chowser. Mascarpone is an Italian cream cheese. If I were to tell you my last name, you'd know I know of what I speak......tee hee. I often make lasagna with low fat cream cheese, as mascarpone is sometimes difficult to find out here in the *sticks*.

        1. re: chowser

          You can definitely get by with low fat cream cheese in that recipe. It should maintain a similar consistency,and the subtle flavors of the mascarpone are likely to get a bit muddled anyhow. You might be well off to whip the cream cheese beforehand, though, else it may seem a little gritty.

          My Blog: http://www.epicureforum.com

          1. re: sirregular

            lots of evil ubiquitous vegetable gums in low-fat cream cheese. digestive consequences....

            1. re: alkapal

              You can always make your own if it bothers you.

              http://biology.clc.uc.edu/Fankhauser/...

              1. re: chowser

                thanks!

        2. the substitutions on this site may be just as fatty:
          http://gourmetsleuth.com/equivalents_...

          this has some other substitution ideas, maybe useful.....
          http://www.pastrywiz.com/season/tira2...
          e.g., whipped cottage cheese or whipped ricotta

          1. I suppose you could use drained...plain non-fat yogurt. But there's just something about that moscarpone.

            1. Wiki says that "Mascarpone is a triple-cream cheese made from crème fraîche by denaturing with rennet", so it would appear that mascarpone and crème fraîche would have the same fat content. I could be wrong of course.

              Recipezaar has some recipes for a substitute but i was looking for an already made substitute.