For the next month you can expect to see a bit of crafting, a lot of cooking and some of the kids. We are going to our friends' house for dinner tonight. I offered/insisted/begged to make dessert. I made a chocolate tart and salted caramel sauce for dessert.
Here's the tart before baking
The tart recipe is from Le Cordon Bleu Home Collection Tarts & Pastries
200g plain flour
large pinch of salt
70g unsalted butter
80g caster sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1-2 drops vanilla extract
1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour and salt. Cut the butter into 1cm cubes and place in the flour. Rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
2. Stir in the sugar and make a well in the centre. Pour in the combined egg and vanilla and slowly work the mixture together using a palette knife or a pastry scraper. If the dough is too dry, sprinkle it with a little water until it just holds together.
3. Remove the dough from the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Using the palm of your hand, smear the dough away from you until it is smooth.
4. Gather the dough into a ball and flatten it slightly. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the the refrigerator to chill for 20 minutes before using.
OR if you are me, ignore steps 1 and 2 and chuck it all in the Thermomix and go speed 6 for 10 seconds then follow steps 3 and 4.
My tart tin was smaller than the recipe specified, so I ended up lining my tin which is 24cm and two 10cm tins.
Bitter Chocolate Tart
1 quantity sweet pastry (see above)
150g dark chocolate (I used Callebaut 811nv)
150g unsalted butter, chopped
200g caster sugar
75g plain flour
cocoa powder, to dust
1. Preheat the oven to moderately hot 200C. Roll out the pastry to a thickness of 2.5mm (1/8") and line a greased shallow loose-bottomed flan tin, 26cm across the base.
2. Bake blind for 10 minutes until firm. Remove the beans and paper and return to the oven for a further 5 minutes.
3. Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl set over a pan of steaming water, making sure that the bowl does not touch the water. Remove the bowl from the pan. Beat the eggs, sugar and flour together and mix them into the melted chocolate and butter. Pour this mixture into the pastry case and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the filling is just set.
4. Remove the tart from the tin and leave to cool completely before dusting with cocoa.
Yes, I did use my Thermomix to do the filling.
1. I used raw sugar, so I weighed the 200g of raw sugar into the TMX and 10 seconds at speed 9. Weigh in the 75g flour and then set the flour and sugar aside.
2. Weigh 150g chocolate into the TMX. I used Callebaut callets which are already in bit size pieces. Grate the chocolate for 15 seconds at speed 6. Scrape down the sides.
3. Cut the butter into cubes and weigh 150g into the TMX. Set the TMX to 50deg for 5 minutes at speed 3. If the chocolate and butter are melted before 5 minutes, then you can stop it before 5 minutes. Mine melted in about 3 minutes, but if you butter is cold, it could take longer.
4. With the TMX running at speed 3, drop each egg through the top of the lid one at a time. Once eggs are incorporated, take the lid off, scrape down the sides and add the flour and sugar. Mix at speed 3 for 15 seconds (I have to admit that I stopped taking notes, so this is from memory. IF the mixture doesn't look blended, just go a few more seconds).
5. Pour into the tin and bake as above.
I also made this salted caramel sauce that I spread on the plate under the tart slices. I made that sauce in the Thermomix, but I found this sauce which looks delicious and I reckon would be even better than the one that I made. The Thermomix may do lots of cool things, but it doesn't get hot enough to make a true caramel.
Like my cute jars? Got them at Chefs Warehouse last week. Think I'm going to have to head back there in the next couple of weeks because we might be making sauces/jams/curds for holiday gifts this year.