Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Larkcreek Inn Chocolate Tart

Ingredients for the chocolate sucre:
1/2 pound powdered sugar
1 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 T vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 pound (6 ounces) flour
2 ounces cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt

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Ingredients for the chocolate tart filling:
1 pound dark chocolate, chopped
6 ounces butter
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 2/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar

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Ingredients for the caramel sauce:
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup water
2 cups cream

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Ingredients for the candied walnuts:
8 ounces walnuts, rough chopped
a pinch of cinnamon
a pinch of cayenne pepper
brown sugar, to coat
approximately one half of an egg white (keep the whole white as you may need a little more then half.)

Preparing the chocolate sucre:
Cream together butter, sugar and salt. Add eggs one at a time then add the vanilla extract. Combine flour, cocoa and salt and add to butter mixture and mix until combined. Wrap in plastic and chill until firm. Roll out and poke holes in the bottom of the tart shell to keep it from creating bubbles. Bake at 350 degrees F in a convection oven for 5 to 6 minutes. Let cool then pour the ganache.

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Preparing the chocolate tart filling:
In a large-size saucepan, combine chocolate and butter and melt over medium heat.

In a bowl, combine sugar, 2/3 cup of the heavy cream and eggs, whisking to combine. Slowly add chocolate mixture to egg mixture whisking continuously.

Note: The remaining 1 cup of whip cream will be used upon serving the tart.

Pour filling into pre-baked shell and bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes. Bake until the filling, 1 inch from the edge, is set but the center is still wobbly when gently shaken.

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Preparing the caramel sauce:
Combine the sugar, corn syrup and water and bring to a boil. Cook until sugar reaches a medium amber color. Add the cream slowly to stop the caramel. Use a long whisk because the caramel will splatter and put off harmful steam.

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Preparing the candied walnuts:
Weigh out the walnuts and give them a rough chop. Whip the egg whites until foamy, they do not need to hold a stiff peak.

Add your spices to the white, then add the walnuts, stir to coat. Add brown sugar until the nuts look like they’re dry. Initially the brown sugar will begin to moisten because of the egg white and turn dark, but as you add the sugar it will become lighter as it no longer soaks up the moisture. Bake at 350 degrees F until walnuts start to turn a light amber color and they no longer look moist, they do not need to be stirred.

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Assembling the tart:
Take remaining 1 cup of whip cream and add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Whip until firm. Add caramel sauce to the plate, to make it more decorative you can place in a ziplock bag, snip off one small end and have fun decorating the plate with it. Place a piece of chocolate tart on top, garnish with a generous dollop of whip cream and sprinkle with candied walnuts.

Refrigerated cake will keep well wrapped in plastic and refrigerated.


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