For our soon-to-be-celebrated anniversary, I got a new tart pan from my boyfriend. We picked it on our most recent trip to the Åland islands in a shop that is an amateur baker’s paradise and one of my go-to places whenever I happen to be visiting the Finnish archipelago. I decided not to wait for our anniversary to use it, and since we have a guest right now I thought this would be the perfect excuse to inaugurate it.
The recipe I decided to try is chocolate tart. At first I thought I’d just bake a shortcrust shell and fill it with whipped ganache, then I decided to make a baked chocolate filling, instead. So the first thing to make here is the shortcrust, one of my favourite things to make. For this tart you will need:
- 110 g margarine
- 175 g flour
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1/4 cup ice-cold water
- pinch of salt
Combine the margarine (which needs to be at room temperature), flour, sugar and salt and mix at high speed using a hand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachments. When the mixture resembles grated parmesan, add the water little by little, until the dough gathers into a ball. This may happen before all the water is added, so don’t add it all in one go. Stop the mixer and chill the dough for 10 minutes in the fridge.
After 10 minutes, roll out the dough and lay it into a baking pan, preferably one with a removable bottom. Prick the bottom with a fork all over the surface to prevent it from bulging as it bakes, and bake it in the preheated oven at 180°C for 30 minutes. As the crust is baking, take care of the filling:
- 250 ml whipping cream
- 150 g dark chocolate
- 2 tbsp sugar
- pinch of salt
- 2 small eggs
Warm up the cream (I have used 36% fat whipping cream) until it is about to boil, then remove from the heat and add the chopped dark chocolate. I have used a semi-sweet chocolate containing 55% of cocoa. Whisk until all the chocolate is melted, then add sugar and salt and whisk well. In another bowl, lightly beat the 2 eggs. I recently bought free-range eggs from a co-worker’s own hens and I absolutely love them. Pour the whisked eggs into the chocolate mixture, stirring continuously in order to properly incorporate the eggs. The mixture will thicken.
After your shortcrust has been baking for 30 minutes, take it out and let it cool for 10 minutes before adding the filling. In the meantime lower the oven temperature to 160°C and allow it to adjust. Then pour the filling onto the shortcrust and return the tart to the oven. Bake for 15-20 more minutes (this will depend on the thickness of your chocolate layer). Remove when it looks set and let cool completely before cutting.My pretty new tart pan passed the test and the cake turned out absolutely fabulous. And since I had an illustrator in the house, I spontaneously took her stuff to use as props for these pictures. The tart blends in so well it almost looks like it’s part of these painting tools. But this was just the artist’s mid-afternoon snack, really.