18 January 2010

chocolate truffle tart recipe.

I bake pretty regularly, but I can't say that I try out new recipes all that often.  Part of it is pragmatic- fancy desserts aren't as portable or long lasting as say, cookies- and the other part of it is the fear factor.  I get so nervous-  baking failures are just so public.  As a result, my baking vanity is largely tied to my ability to produce endless batches of sugar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, brownies, beer bread, Hershey's Perfectly Chocolate Cake, etc. etc. Nobody seems to mind.

This all changed the other night [drama!], when my roommate presented me with a major challenge- to produce something "French and decadent" that would compliment his Duck Casseulet.  I didn't know what exactly that was, but I was pretty sure I'd stumbled upon recipe gold while searching through one of my favorite food p*rn sites.

Using the Chocolate Truffle Tart recipe from the food blog Tartelette, I had one of the most pleasant baking experiences that I've had in a long time.  Maybe it was spending a quiet, lazy, unrushed, rainy Sunday morning in a clean kitchen- something I find infinitely sublime- but it had a lot to do the quality of the recipe. It calls for relatively few ingredients and offers some really useful method directions.  I have long been a hater of rolling out crusts, but this recipe had me transferring pie crust into the pan with zero cracks and no falling apart. I might have almost cried, crust has been that much of a burden to me.

I was scared of using unsalted butter and could only find unsweetened chocolate, but consensus was that the dessert was not too sweet, and sufficiently French and decadent.  It received rave reviews (and totally cleaned plates) from our dinner guests, and pairs nicely with red wine or coffee.

Chocolate Truffle Tarts [adapted from Tartellete according to how I made the recipe- which is not necessarily the most efficient way]

makes 1 mega tart- could probably serve twelve or more- perfect for crowds who just want a little sliver of dessert

For the chocolate crust: 
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup  unsifted powdered sugar
3 egg yolks
pinch of salt
1 1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

For the chocolate truffle filling:
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate [or unsweetened chocolate + 1/2 cup of sugar]
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup strong brewed coffee
4 large eggs

For the chocolate ganache:
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate [or unsweetened chocolate + 1/4 cup sugar]
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
pinch of salt

Prepare the crust:
In a mixer, whip together the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks and pinch of salt and mix until incorporated. Add the flour and cocoa powder and mix briefly. Dump the whole mixture onto a lightly floured board and gather the dough into a smooth ball. Do not work the dough while in the mixer or it will toughen it up. Flatten the dough into a disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
Preheat oven to 350F and position a rack in the center. Butter a springform pan
 [parchment would be a good idea here] and set aside.

When the dough is nice and cold, roll it out on a lightly floured board or in between two sheets of plastic [rolling the dough out underneath a sheet of cling film was a revolutionary concept for me]. If the dough tears while you roll or/and transfer into the rings, just patch it with your fingertips. Bake for 10 minutes. Keep the oven at 350F.

[I did these steps while my dough was chilling]:

Prepare the filling:
Place the chocolate in a medium bowl and set aside. In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, bring the butter, sugar, and coffee together to a boil over medium. Pour the mixture over the chocolate and leave it undisturbed for 2-3 minutes. Gently whisk until smooth [by hand is much better than mixer for these steps, believe me, Kitchen Aid addicts, I tried both]. Add the eggs, one at a time whisking quickly until the mixture is smooth. Pour on top of crust and bake for 10 minutes. It will look a little jiggly when you take it out, but it will set in the fridge later.
Let cool completely.

Prepare the chocolate ganache:
Place the chocolate in a medium bowl and set aside. In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, bring the heavy cream to a gentle boil. Pour it over the chocolate and let sit for 2-3 minutes. Whisk until smooth and incorporate the butter at the same time until the ganache is completely smooth. Resist temptation to store in refrigerator if you are waiting for your dough or the tart to bake.  

Left with about twenty extra minutes of dough chill time after preparing the truffle and ganache, I recommend mixing up the egg whites with some of the leftover heavy cream, scrambling them, and serving them with some of the leftover coffee you made.  Coffee with supplimentary heavy cream, that is.  COTGB is all about full fat dairy.

Spread ganache on top of tart and smooth out with an offset spatula. Refrigerate until ready to eat- be forewarned, it gets pretty solid in the fridge so you may want a substantial warm knife to help with the cutting.  We served ours with vanilla flavored unsweetened homemade whipped cream.  Delish.

1 comment:

Mama-san said...

My mouth is watering! Sounds like an amazing bit of chocolateyness. Really too bad you can't send us a piece in the mail!