So speaking of Christmas… I still haven’t put my tree up… we had planned to but the weekend has been eventful and interrupted some of my domestic plans.. therefor, no tree… yet… hopefully tomorrow…
Like I said a couple of posts ago… we need to start figuring out our holiday menus NOW… it’s feeling like it’s a bit late as well… but i’m trying my best not to let the stress wash over me… it’s such a hectic time of year, the stress will come anyway but I’m really trying to hold it off for a while!
Now I know this looks pretty rough around the edges… I have always told you that I’m not a perfectionist when it comes to my kitchen skills..and it’s not because I turn my nose up at it… I just don’t think I can be really… firstly I enjoy the rustic, slightly mangled look of things I eat… I like them to look REAL, not like they belong behind a glass window in a museum… secondly I do not have a very steady hand… and I like to let things be out of place… it’s fine… I think that as long as it looks inviting enough to put it in your mouth, you should be happy with that… and I am, most of the time!
I was having lunch with my new found friend Suzan of foodieinbarcelona.com (great site by the way!) and our conversation obviously revolves around FOOD!! Doesn’t everyones!? So she told me about this amazing chocolate tart she just made and I proceeded to hound her about it the next day…So she sent me the recipe! It’s by Joanne Chang… I hadn’t heard of her before this so I read a bit about her…:
In 2000, she opened Flour, a bakery and café, in Boston’s South End. Flour features breakfast pastries, breads, cakes, cookies, and tarts as well as sandwiches, soups, and salads. In 2007 she opened a second branch of Flour in the Fort Point Channel area, in 2010 a third branch in Cambridge near MIT and Central Square, and in 2013 a fourth branch in the Back Bay.
Flour has been featured in Gourmet, Food&Wine, Bon Appetit, the New York Times, Conde Nast Traveler, Lucky Magazine, Inc. Magazine, and Boston Magazine and has received numerous Best of Boston awards. Flour was also featured on Throwdown with Bobby Flay on the Food Network in which Joanne’s sticky buns won over Chef Flay’s.
You can read more here:http://flourbakery.com/team/joanne-chang
This is such a simple, beautiful tart… really, it’s so basic actually, but if you use GREAT quality ingredients, every single ingredient just shines through.. I honestly believe that when you are making something like this, you must go out of your way to ensure that everything that goes into it is SUPER quality! I put this baby together at 8pm on Friday night… a slightly rushed job I have to say, but it needed to be done in order to have a dessert that very night… which is why it doesn’t look so polished… but hey it tastes AMAZING!
See the crumbly texture of the paté sucreé? it should be light and airy and have a crunch… mine was ALMOST perfect… I rushed the chilling processes slightly as I was in a hurry to get the tart ready in time to devour it after dinner… such gluttons we are!!! here’s the recipe.. I have not adapted it at all, the only changes I made were to put these candied fruit in as I said, but in the original recipe there is no fruit at all so I’ve left the fruits out.. you can add them in if you wish… all you need to do is place them on the baked tart shell before you pour the chocolate filling over it…
- 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 egg yolk
- For the chocolate tart
- 8oz bittersweet chocolate, at least 70%, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup dutch-processed cocoa for dusting at the end.
- In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or with a hand beater, cream the butter, sugar, and salt until pale and light, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the flour and beat on low speed until the flour mixes well with the butter-sugar mixture. Add the egg yolk and beat on low speed until the dough comes together. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.
- **You can also stop at this point and refrigerate for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to two weeks. Line a baking sheet with parchment and place a 10-inch round tart ring on top. (I used a long rectangular tart pan, which worked beautifully.) Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let sit for about 30 minutes. Using a rolling pin, flatten the dough into a disk about 1/2 inch thick. Lightly flour the work surface and sprinkle the dough with some flour. Roll into a circle about 12 inches in diameter and less than 1/4 inch thick, or a long rectangle about 2 inches longer and wider than the tart pan, if using a rectangular pan. Roll the dough circle/rectangle around the pin and unroll it on top of the tart ring. Press the dough well into the bottom and sides of the ring, using scraps to patch up tears or missing bits. Trim the edge of the dough so it is even with the rim of the tart pan. Poke the bottom of the tart shell with a fork, so that air can escape when baking. Refrigerate the tart shell for at least 30 minutes before baking. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 180C/350F about 15 minutes before the tart shell is ready to go into the oven. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool to room temperature on a wire rack.
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 180C/350F. Place the chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan, combine the cream and milk and scald over medium heat until tiny bubbles form around the edges of the pan (do not boil). Pour the hot cream mixture over the chocolate and let sit for about 1 minute, then whisk until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth. Slowly whisk in the egg yolks, one at a time. Add the butter and salt and whisk until completely incorporated. Pour the chocolate mixture into the tart shell, and bake for about 15 minutes, or until the edges start to set and the middle is still a little bit soft-set (kind of like Jell-O). Let cool on a wire rack for at least 2 hours, or up to 6 hours. Garnish as desired. This tart is best at room temperature, but can be refrigerated as well. It should keep a couple of days in the fridge, in an airtight container
Seeing as this tart can probably keep well for about 3 days I would say, it’s a good one to have in your Christmas repertoire… Thank you Suzy…. this is a keeper!!!