refrigeration dulled the appearance of the filling but not the chocolate flavors!
Although the fasting rules are significantly more relaxed these days, I used the occasion presented by this recipe to clean out my chocolate drawer of all manner of white, milk, semisweet and bittersweet odds and ends. And the finished product more than qualified as a rich indulgence.
- There are four host blogs for the tarts this week, and you can find the recipe at any of their sites, along with some pretty spectacular tarts: Steph, Spike, Jaime and Jessica. Of course you can also find the recipe in the book Baking With Julia!
- The recipe is David Ogonowski’s Chocolate Truffle Tartlets.
- I made 1/2 recipe of the chocolate crust in the book. Some of my fellow bakers have pointed out that the chocolate crust is very close to Dorie's recipe in Baking: From My Home to Yours. The crust dough comes together beautifully (I used the food processor) with 5oz/cup for the flour weight, as it says in the front of the book.
- I find that tarts are one of the easiest desserts to adapt to gluten-free baking (the fillings often have no gluten, and with a few good gluten-free crust recipes in the baking arsenal, whipping up a gluten-free dessert is simple. So I made 1/2 recipe of gluten-free (and grain free, actually) crust from the blog Deliciously Organic.
- From each dough I made two 4" tarts (my tart molds are quite deep) and two 3" shallow tarts in my silicone mold (using 4 of the 6 wells in the mold).
- The recipe clearly directs us to remove the bottoms of the tart pans before baking the crust, I suppose so that the crust would bake on the bottom without too much insulation from the tart pan bottoms and the baking sheet they were on. Rule-follower that I am, I did take out the bototms of my little 4″ tarts but if I were making a full size tart I’d definitely leave the bottom in. In fact, I would leave the bottoms in any tart pan because it was very difficult to unmold the tarts with no bottom to push against, and my crusts crumbled on the edges.
- I made a full recipe of the filling. The recipe calls for 8 egg yolks. One thing learned from Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc cookbook is that egg yolks vary – those on the West Coast (of the US) are smaller than on the East. So when you are using a large quantity, the differences can really multiply! Ad Hoc suggests a weight of 15g per egg yolk, so I measured a total of 120g for the 8 yolks, using a mixture of duck eggs and chicken eggs from my farm box.
- This was a great recipe for cleaning out the chocolate drawer - I used 4 or 5 different kinds of bittersweet - ranging from 62% to 75% - in the egg mixture for the filling. When it came to the chocolate cubes that were stirred into the filling I used two kinds of white chocolate, two kind of milk chocolate, and two kinds of semisweet. I don't like white chocolate but I have some hanging around so I added just a bit - 1/2 ounce of white chocolate. The rest of my cubes were 1 oz of semisweet chocolate and 2.5 oz of milk chocolate
- The recipe calls for biscotti or amaretti biscuits to be crumbled into the filling for crunch. I used 5 amaretti (they seemed small, and I would use a few more next time).
The tarts were quite good and quite, quite rich. Just one of the 3" tarts (which were really small) bordered on being too big of a serving! The texture of the amaretti got lost in the heavy richness of the filling. The gluten-free crust turned out very well, and I'll be making it again.
If you want to see a lot of chocolate tarts, go to the link post on the TWD site, and start clicking on posts of the different bakers. Happy Fat Tuesday!!