I must apologise, this blog has been a little neglected for a while now. Unfortunately university assignments must take priority, but soon they will be finished again for a while - I promise!! So this challenge post is a little late since I had a major assignment due on the same day and yesterday was really busy, again my apologies. Better late than never right?
I did manage to make the Daring Bakers challenge for August which was set by Veronica of Veronica's Test Kitchen and Patricia of Technicolour Kitchen, a wonderful milk chocolate and caramel tart. I made this for myself for my birthday and everyone enjoyed it. In fact, I made it twice (once with milk chocolate as called for and the other with dark chocolate, there were plans for a white chocolate one as well, but I was all tarted out!) - that is how good it was. Well the pastry recipe made enough for both of them, so why not?
Speaking of the pastry, a lot of the Daring Bakers out there found the cinnamon in it a little too strong. I LOVE cinnamon, not only is it tasty, but it also helps to control blood sugar levels - which is a big plus in my book. Just ignore the massive amounts of sugar that accompany it in this recipe. Although I love cinnamon, it was slightly too strong in the milk chocolate version of the tart. In the dark chocolate version the cinnamon was more of a background flavour as I'm sure it was intended to be. So if I was to make the milk chocolate version again I would halve the cinnamon.
The dark chocolate tart was by far my favourite, although I wouldn't turn down a slice of the milk chocolate one if it wandered my way. I am a dark chocolate kind of girl, I switched to it in an attempt to feel better about eating chocolate and now the thought of milk chocolate makes me kind of sick, with all its sweetness. ick. But this tart - Yum. Just in very small doses!
So here is the recipe, from Eric Kayser's Sweet & Savoury Tarts. Thanks Veronica and Patricia for the challenge, it was delicious! Check out the rest of the lovely Daring Bakers posts for this month (if you haven't already done so!) by clicking on the link to the Daring Bakers blogroll in my sidebar.
Milk Chocolate & Caramel Tart (Serves 10-12)
To make the chocolate shortcrust pastry cream 1C softened unsalted butter in a food processor or kitchenaid and mix in 1C + 2Tbsp icing sugar, 1/2C ground hazelnuts & 1tsp cinnamon (if making dark chocolate version use 2tsp). Add 2 eggs, one at a time, while mixing constantly and then sift in 4 1/2C cake flour (I used this substitute), 2 1/2tsp baking powder & 1 1/2Tbsp cocoa powder. Form the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.
Preheat oven to 160C. Allow dough to soften for 15 minutes before rolling out to desired thickness and lining a greased 26cm tart pan. Prick all over with a fork and blind bake with pastry weights for 15 minutes. My dough didn't so much roll as it did break in to many tiny little pieces, not the best dough I've worked with but it patched together quite well and you couldn't really tell after it was baked.
Caramelise 1C sugar in a saucepan until it turns a light amber colour. For the dark chocolate tart I used brown sugar to get a darker, nuttier flavour without burning the caramel. Incorporate 1C heavy cream (or creme fraiche) and 1/4C butter and set aside to cool slightly. If the caramel turns into lumps at the first sight of the cream just heat it slowly and stir until they melt again. Just make sure your wearing an apron, otherwise your clothes may end up looking like mine did. Unless you like the thought of starring in an adult movie with bodily fluids splashed all over your clothes, in which case go ahead and leave the apron in the drawer. Who would have thought caramel would dry white? In another bowl beat together 2 whole eggs & 1 egg yolk and add in 2 1/2Tbsp flour. Pour this into the cooled caramel mixture and spread over tart base. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the caramel is slightly foamy and set. Refrigerate until completely cooled.
For the chocolate mousse, beat 1 1/4C thickened cream until stiff and fold in 250g melted milk chocolate (or dark). Spread over cooled caramel tart base, smooth with a spatula and refrigerate for 1 hour or until set. Decorate with caramel made out of another 1/2C sugar and serve.
Why Should I Eat That?
Definitely not an everyday food! But for a special occasion you need to indulge a little... and it's low in sodium, that has to count for something... right??
Nutrition Information (per 10 or 12 serves)
Energy 2516 or 2096kJ, Protein 7 or 6g, Fat (Total) 38 or 32g (Saturated) 24 or 20g, Carbohydrate (Total) 60 or 50g (Sugars) 50 or 41g, Dietary Fibre 0.8 or 0.7g, Sodium 90 or 75mg.