End of summer: Eat.
Summer almost has come to its end, have you enjoyed it? I sure did.
I have spent my summer in Greece, as every summer of my life. During the winter I am always planning to spend my summer vacations abroad but every single time I step back. You see, I cannot resist to the greek summer.
Summer in Greece can be best described with the following words: great food and stunning beaches. You need anything more? I do not.
Last Sunday I did not go to the beach but good food was there to cheer me up. Thus, after having a chat with Panagiotis, Panagiotis is one of the most charismatic people I know, I decided to make a french chocolate tart. Panagiotis have noticed that I haven’t posted anything related to chocolate and he inspired me to post one. Panagioti I hope to enjoy it!
The first thing you have to know about this recipe is that you must have a lot of patience. You have to wait for the dough to rest, you have to wait for the mixture to tighten, in general you have to wait. But, as an award you will get one of the most creamy chocolate tart you have ever eaten.
First you have to prepare your dough. For the pie crust I have followed the same recipe I used for making the cream tart, but this time everything went great.
For making the pie crust you will need:
- 300 g flour for all purposes
- 140 g butter (keep it on the fridge until you use it)
- 100 g caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk, for brushing
- 2 tablespoons water (the amount of water it depends, if the dough is too firm add some, if not let it as it is)
First cut the cold butter in small pieces. After cutting the butter, in a mixer bowl add the caster sugar and cold butter and beat for about 2-3 minutes, until the butter dissolves completely. Turn down the speed and add the egg. The texture should resemble coarse breadcrumbs.
Add ice water only if the dough is too firm. Very slowly add first 1 tablespoon and if the dough remains firm add a second one until the dough comes together and becomes soft enough to work with. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, refrigerate and allow it to rest for at least 1 hour.
I told you, you have to wait.
For baking the pie crust first you have to preheat oven to 160* C.
Then, grease and flour a 28 cm round tart pan and set aside. Before starting rolling up the dough dust a clean surface or a parchment paper with flour, add some flour to the dough to.
Use a rolling-pin to roll out the dough, slowly. If you find it difficult to roll out the dough, let it rest at room temperature for 5 minutes so it can soften.
When the dough becomes thin as a stack of 10 playing cards use the rolling-pin to help you transfer the dough to the tart pan. Press on the dough, lightly with your hands, to help it stick to the sides of the pan.
Pierce small holes onto the bottom of the tart dough. Spread 2 large sheets of plastic wrap over the dough, crisscrossed. Fill with rice or dried beans. Rice or beans are used in order to maintain the shape of the crust as it is being baked. If you eliminate the weights you may encounter undesirable levels of puffing, curling and shrinking. You can keep the beans and use them next time.
Cover the beans by turning over the top sheet of plastic wrap and bake the tart shell along with the weights for ½ an hour.
Remove from oven and increase the oven temperature to 180* C. Remove weights and brush tart shell with some egg wash (egg yolk diluted with a small amount of water). Bake for another 5 minutes, until it turns golden brown.
Now, let’s start with the filling. For making the filling you will need the following:
- 250 g heavy cream, chilled
- 3 eggs
- 150 g granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 200 g dark chocolate couverture
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 tablespoons butter, softened and cut into 1 cm cubes
Beat the chilled heavy cream in a mixer on high-speed for 2-3 minutes, until it thickens and then refrigerate. Don’t worry, you do not have to wait.
Cut the chocolate into pieces and put in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and melt in a microwave set at 800 watts for 1 minute. If you do not have a microwave (I do not have one, you can use a bain marie for melting the chocolate).
You will also need a bain marie for the rest of the procedure. So, place a large bowl over a medium pot of simmering water (2-3 cm of water). Add the eggs, sugar and water to the bowl.
You have to be extra careful with the bowl, the bowl must not touch the hot water. If the bowl touch the hot water there is a risk to end up with an omelet. Also, you have to whisk quickly.
Whisk the ingredients together using a hand whisk. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and start to whisk quickly until the mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat and add the butter and melted chocolate while whisking continuously until completely incorporated into the mixture.
Then, add the whipped cream very gently to the mixture with the aid of a rubber spatula. Remember to combine whipped cream with chocolate mixture very gently with circular movements in order to avoid losing its volume.
Fill tart base with the mixture and refrigerate for 3-4 hours. If you decide to make the tart on the morning you will be lucky enough to enjoy a piece during the afternoon. I decided to make the tart during the afternoon, so, I have tasted it on Monday.
Nevertheless, the french chocolate tart was very creamy, it left me with a sense of velvet. I have also add some raspberries, you can add any fruit you want or some orange marmalade.
I really hope to enjoy the post and to like the recipe.