One of my all-time favorite tarts that I love to make is a nut caramel tart with a chocolate ganache layer on the top. It is seriously the best dessert ever, and you simply need a thin sliver to satisfy your cravings. A little bit goes a long way with the nut caramel tart. I had taken a Pie and Tart class about 3-4 years ago from a famous Pastry School in San Francisco called Tante Marie, which unfortunuately closed down 🙁 . It was an excellent class and we learnt to make a lot of different kinds of pies and tarts, basic techniques, basic crust recipes, pate sucre etc. This is where I learnt to make the chocolate nut caramel tart.
Couple of weeks ago, I saw Tangelos at the Farmer’s Market. Tangelos are a combination of pomelo and tangerines. They are very sweet, slight tart from the pomelo, very juicy and very delicious! The skin is thin and you can even eat the skin! I actually tried it and I loved the skin by itself. I can only imagine how delicious it would taste if the skin was candied! It would be a perfect addition to any cake! Seeing those tangelos, I really wanted to make a chocolate orange tart! Chocolate and orange is such a classic combination and chocolate and earl grey is also such a classic combination. Few months ago, I bought a loose leaf tea which had earl grey and dried citrus bits in it, that I simply loved sipping on. I had that combination in mind, and using all of these flavors, I brought them into my Chocolate Earl Grey Tangelo Mascarpone Tart.
The crust recipe is adapted from the class that I took. I added dark cocoa powder to it, to give it that beautiful dark chocolatey color! The filling is a luxurious mascarpone cream filling with a lot of tangelo zest and tangelo juice. The tart shell is par baked first to set it. Then it is filled with the mascarpone filling and then baked till goldenish in color and set. Once cooled, it is covered with a chocolate earl grey ganache and left in the fridge to set for a few hours. Then it is upto your whim and fancy how you want to decorate it! I simply piped the leftover whipped ganache on the top and put chocolate pearls to decorate it. You could use some gold leaf if you want to make it more fancy.
I believe any citrus would be great in this tart. I am going gaga over those tangelos, so that is what I used in this tart. This dessert would be a fantastic any time of the year dessert, since citrus is available any time of the year, except for the special varieties ofcourse. It would be a great center piece dessert for a party too.
You have to take the fork through the tart to get a complete bite, to experience all the flavors in one go J. It is seriously divine! The funniest part was how my son was eating the tart! He would take the ganache layer apart. He would then lap up the filling first. Then he would cover the crust with the ganache top, and then eat it like a pizza! It was a sight to remember! I actually have a picture of the deconstructed tart and it is pretty funny! J Moments like these are meant to cherish and what makes making treats for my family so fun!
Hope you all are enjoying the beautiful spring weather wherever you are! It is Birthday Month for my husband and I so we are literally basking and enjoying this month! Funnily enough we are both Taurus, and butt heads all the time, but I could not imagine living my life with any other partner ever! We are so alike yet so different, but we cherish each other and that makes it all worth it! So Happy Birthday Month to us! 🙂
If you do get a chance to make this tart, please do not forget to tag #thejamlab on Instagram and/or leave a comment on the blog post.
In a food processor, add the all purpose flour, almond flour, dark cocoa powder, salt and sugar. Let it incorporate for a minute. Add the cold unsalted butter and pulse again till the butter becomes pea sized. Now add the egg and vanilla extract and pulse again for a minute, till it comes together. It will be a grainy consistency, loose but still bound.
In a rectangular flute pan( about 14x4 inches), pour the contents of the food processor into the crust, and gently press evenly with the palms of your hands, and press it towards the edges to form an even distribution over the entire pan. Once it is even and distributed, put the pan into the fridge for 20 minutes to set. Once set, poke with a fork throughout the base.
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Put a parchment paper on top of the crust, add either a whole pack of kidney beans or pie weights evenly distributed, and par bake the crust in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Once removed from the oven, let the crust cool completely. Remove the parchment paper along with the pie weights. (I found that using granulated sugar creates an even edge throughput the pie. So using granulated sugar instead of pie weights really helps!)
Tangelo Mascarpone Filling:
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, with a whisk attachment, add the mascarpone cream and heavy cream and beat for 1 minute. Add in the granulated sugar, egg, egg yolk, vanilla extract and tangelo juice and zest and whisk for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Pour the mixture into the chocolate tart shell and smoothen out with a flat icing spatula.
Bake for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown in color. It should be jiggly but not liquid like. This means it is set.
Remove it from the oven, and let cool completely for an hour.
Chocolate Earl Grey Ganache:
In a small saucepan, simmer on medium heat, the heavy cream and the earl grey tea for about 5 minutes. Switch off the gas. Steep the tea leaves in the heavy cream to infuse it with the tea for about 5 more minutes. Strain the heavy cream through a strainer, to discard the tea leaves. Use a rubber spatula to press the tea leaves against the strainer to get all the flavor off the tea leaves.
In a medium bowl, add the chocolate chips and sugar. Add the warm heavy cream and keep it covered for 3 minutes. After 3 minutes, stir to mix all the chocolate. Keep stirring to make the mixture smooth. If there are still chocolate chip pieces, you can use the bain marie method to make the mixture smooth. In the bain marie method, in a small saucepan filled with about 1 cup of water, on medium heat, warm the water for about 3-4 minutes. Add the bowl with the chocolate + heavy cream mixture on the top of the saucepan and keep stirring to melt the chocolate for about 1-2 minutes until it is smooth. Remove off the saucepan.
Add the unsalted butter and mix again until smooth and shiny. Let it cool for a few minutes. Pour the ganache(leave about 1 cup out for the decoration) on the cooled tart. Smoothen it out with a flat icing spatula. Let it set and cool in the fridge for about 2 hours.
In a medium bowl, add the heavy whipping cream. Whisk rigorously with a large whisk for 2 minutes until soft peaks form, or if you want to use a hand mixer to whisk it you can do that as well. With the hand mixer, the soft peaks will form faster in about a minute.
With the hand mixer, in another medium bowl, whisk the chocolate ganache for 20-30 seconds till smooth. Fold in the whisked heavy whipping cream to form a smooth chocolatey mousse texture. Use a pastry bag with a ¼ inch star tip. Fill it with the whipped chocolate ganache, push it down the bag using a bench scraper. Pipe away any design you want on top of the tart. Decorate with the chocolate pearls.