Monday, January 15, 2018

Cloud-like Chocolate Fluff Tart




The chocolate filling for this tart is so light, airy and delicate that it disappears in my mouth like a puff of air! I could accidentally inhale the whole thing. I was never a huge fan of chocolate tarts, but this chocolate tart simply blows my mind!

I followed the original recipe with just a couple of minor modifications. I added a pinch of salt to the pastry because I like a little salt in my chocolate. I also changed the technique for making the pastry slightly.

The original recipe suggests to "push (the pastry mixture) into the tin with fingers and knuckles, just as one does for the crumb crust of a cheesecake". This didn't work for me because I couldn't seems to get a thin even layer. So instead, I rolled out the pastry and lined the pastry into the tin. The pastry is a little crumbly, so it broke up in a few places, which is fine as it can be easily patched up by pressing the broken up pieces back. Also I freeze the pastry overnight before baking as it really helps with reducing shrinkage. And I pricked the base all over with a fork just so that the pastry doesn't puff up when it bakes.

A few tips making this pastry. First, butter the tin even if it's non-stick. This pastry will stick to the tin as I learned the hard way. Second, don't bother with blind-baking because the pastry will stick to the baking paper. Again, I learned this the hard way. Lastly, don't remove the pastry from the tin until the filling is set. This pastry is quite delicate and crumbly, and the filling helps to hold the pastry together.

I have altered the recipe to the way I made the tart, but feel free to refer to the original recipe.



Cloud-like Chocolate Fluff Tart
(Adapted from The Cook's Table by Stephanie Alexander)

Makes 23cm tart

Chocolate Pastry
125 grams unsalted butter, softened at room temperature, plus extra for buttering
80 grams caster sugar
150 grams plain flour
50 grams good-quality dutch cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Chocolate Fluff
3 gold strength gelatine sheets (2 grams per sheet)
120 grams dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
80 ml (1/3 cup) strong espresso coffee
3 free-range eggs, separated, room temperature (use the freshest eggs you can get)
80 grams caster sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Optional: You will also need unsweetened whipped cream and strawberries to serve.

To make Chocolate Pastry:
Butter a 23 cm tart tin lightly.

Using an electric mixer with paddle attachment, cream the butter and caster sugar until very pale. Stop the motor. Combine flour, cocoa powder and salt in a separate bowl, then sift the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Using a spatula, incorporate the flour mixture into the butter mixture until well combined and starts to form into a dough.

Wrap pastry with plastic wrap, flatten into a disc, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Roll out the pastry between two sheets of baking paper until 1/4 inch thick. If the pastry becomes too soft and difficult to handle, put pastry in freezer for 5 minutes until firm but pliable. Lift pastry into tin, ease into base and side. Trim off any excess pastry. Prick the base all over with a fork. Freeze the pastry overnight.

When ready to bake the pastry, preheat oven to 180 degree celcius fan-forced. Bake the pastry (from frozen) for 20 minutes. Let cool completely in tin.

To make Chocolate Fluff:
Soak the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water.

Meanwhile, combine the chocolate and coffee in a heatproof bowl that fits snugly over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure the base of the bowl does not touch the water, then stir from time to time until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth.

Remove the bowl from the pan and set aside, then tip out almost all of the hot water, leaving just 2 tablespoons in the pan. Squeeze the gelatine leaves and drop them into the water left in the pan, then stir to dissolve. Pour into the chocolate mixture and stir well.

Using an electric mixer or hand-held electric beaters, beat the egg yolks, half of the caster sugar and the vanilla until thick and pale.

Fold the egg yolk mixture in the chocolate mixture, ensuring that it is all well mixed together. Refrigerate to chill for 15 minutes, whisking once or twice, until the mixture reaches room temperature.

Wash the bowl and beaters and dry very thoroughly.

Using the electric mixer, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining sugar until you have a glossy meringue. Fold into the chocolate mixture and pour into the chocolate pastry case.

Refrigerate to set for at least 4 hours. Carefully remove tart from tin, and decorate with the whipping cream and strawberries to serve if desired.

3 comments:

  1. Looks so good! I love the texture of the filling - seems amazingly delicious!

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  2. My roommate and I are totally obsessed with your blog so we’re so happy to see a new recipe up:) We look forward to your next post, whether it’s a month or a year from now! Happy 2018!!

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    1. Hey there. Thank you for your kind words. It makes me more motivated to keep my new year resolution and update this blog more often. :) happy 2018 to you too.

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