Monday, March 1, 2010

Chocolate Almond Blood Orange Tart

For Trinity Reformed Psalm Sing.

Adapted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking, volume I.

My memory card crashed, so no pictures.

Crème Pâtissière filling:

1 cup granulated sugar (I used ultra fine confectioner's sugar)
5 egg yolks
A wire whip
1/2 cup flour
2 cups boiling milk
1 Tb butter
4 oz 100% cocao
A handful of semisweet chocolate chips
1 Tbsp or so sugar
2 Tbsp Frangelico
2 tsp almond extract

Gradually beat the sugar into the egg yolks, and continue beating till the mixture is pale yellow and forms a slowly dissipating ribbon.

Beat in the flour.

Beat the boiling milk into the yolk mixture, gradually, so the eggs don't scramble.

Pour into a saucepan and set over moderately high heat. Stir with a wire whisk, scrapping the bottom of the pan. It may get lumpy when the sauce comes to a boil, just keep beating it, it should smooth out. After it boils, beat of moderately low heat for 2 to 3 minutes to cook the flour. Be careful the custard does not scorch the bottom of the pan.

Meanwhile place the chocolate, sugar, Frangelico, and almond extract in a bowl over simmering water, till soft.

Remove from the heat, and beat in the butter, and then the chocolate mixture.

Can be kept, refrigerated, covered in plastic wrap, for several days.


Preheat oven to 375.

1 1/3 cups flour
5 Tbsp granulated sugar (I again used confectioner's sugar)
1/8 tsp double-action baking power
7 Tbsp fat: 5 Tb chilled butter, 2 Tb chilled vegetable shortening
1 egg beaten with 1 tsp water
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
zest from two blood oranges, finely chopped
ten or so mint leaves, finely chopped

Place the flour, sugar, butter, vegetable shortening and baking powder in a mixing bowl. Rub the fat and dry ingredients together rapidly with the tips of your fingers until the fat is broken into bits the size of small oatmeal flakes. Blend in the egg, vanilla, orange zest, and mint; and knead the dough rapidly into a ball. Place on a pastry board and with the heel of your hand, rapidly press the pastry by two-spoonful bits down on a pastry board (or counter or table top) away from you in a firm, quick smear. Form again into a ball, wrap in waxed paper, and chill for several hours till firm.

Roll out dough, and place in a 9 to 10 inch tart pan. Bake at 375 for five to six minutes with pie weights holding down the crust, and for an additional eight to ten minutes without the weights. The shell is done when it has shrunk slightly from the mold and begins to brown very lightly.


Section four blood oranges.

Just before serving, fill the crust with the filling, and arrange the oranges on top in concentric circles.

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