Chocolate Caramel Tart

This is from the NYT – it takes a bit of work, but it is totally worth it! I used coconut palm sugar and agave syrup instead of regular sugar and corn syrup.

FOR THE CHOCOLATE DOUGH:
½ c unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ c powdered sugar
¼ c unsweetened cocoa
1 large egg yolk
¾ tsp vanilla
1 ¼ c flour

FOR THE CARAMEL FILLING:
2 c sugar
½ c water
¼ c agave syrup
½ c butter
½ c heavy cream
2 tbsp creme fraiche
PInch of salt

FOR THE CHOCOLATE GLAZE:
3 ½ ounces extra-bittersweet chocolate (70 to 85%), chopped
½ c heavy cream

Prepare chocolate dough:

In bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter, confectioners’ sugar and cocoa. Beat until smooth. Add egg yolk and vanilla, and beat until blended.

Stir flour into dough mixture. Beat on low speed until combined. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 10-inch tart pan.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line tart with parchment and fill with dried beans, rice or pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil and weights, and bake until pastry is dry and set, another 10 to 15 minutes.

Prepare caramel filling:

In a large saucepan, bring sugar, water and agave syrup to a boil. Stir or swirl the pan occasionally, until mixture is a medium amber color, about 12 minutes. Remove from the heat. Caramel will continue to cook and darken off of the heat. Carefully whisk in the butter, cream, creme fraiche and salt until smooth (mixture will bubble up). Pour hot caramel into tart, and allow to cool and set, at least 1 hour.

Prepare chocolate glaze:

Place chocolate in a bowl with cream. microwave on medium for 1 minute, stir, if chocolate is not melted enough, micorwave in 30 second intervals. Stir until smooth. Pour glaze over tart, tilting tart for even coverage.

Refrigerate until tart is set, at least one hour, then sprinkle with a few granules of fleur de sel. Keep refrigerated until serving.

Serves 8 – 10.

Tomato Tart

   

 This tart is divine and so simple perfect for a weeknight.

  • 2 large tomatoes, sliced thin
  • 1 recipe whole wheat tart dough
  • 1/2 c Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 c mixed herbs, minced, chives, parsley and basil 
  • Olive oil spray

Whole Wheat Tart

  • 3/4 c whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 c bread flour 
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 1/4 tsp active yeast
  • 1/4 tsp sugar 
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 c hot water

Combine dry ingredients in a food processor, pulse until combined. Add olive oil to the water and slowly pour into the processor with the machine running. Pulse until a ball forms. Continue to pulse for 1 minute. Remove and let rest, covered with a towel for 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 500 with a pizza stone inside.

Roll out dough, spread with mustard, top with tomatoes and herbs. 

Reduce oven to 425 and bake tart for 10 – 15 until the top is bubbly. Spray wil olive oil and serve.

Serves 4.

 

Asparagus Tart

 

Asparagus, cheese and puff pastry – what’s better? Nothing in my book. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen puff pastry, defrosted
  • 1 bunch of thin asparagus
  • 1 c Gruyere, grated
  • 4 oz ricotta 
  • Espellette pepper

Preheat oven to 400.

Roll out pastry and place on a baking sheet. Prick with a fork and bake for 15 minutes until it starts to brown.

Spread ricotta over pastry. Top with 3/4 the cheese, then aspasragus, espellette and remaining cheese.

Bake 10 – 15 minutes until cheese is melted and staring to brown.

Serves 4. 

Asparagus, Artichoke and Feta tart

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This is perfect for a sunny spring lunch.

Ingredients:
1/3 c creme fraiche
4 oz feta, divided
Salt and pepper
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
All-purpose flour (for work surface)
1 jars marinated artichoke hearts, drained, chopped
4 oz asparagus, chopped
1 large egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 425°. Blend creme and 2 oz feta in a food processor until smooth; season with salt and pepper

Roll out puff pastry on a lightly floured surface into a 16×10-inch rectangle. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Using a paring knife, lightly score pastry (do not cut all the way through), leaving a 1-inch border.

Spread feta mixture over pastry, top with asparagus, artichoke hearts and crumble remaining 2 ounces feta. Brush pastry border with egg.

Bake tart until pastry is puffed and beginning to brown, 10-15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375° and continue to bake until pastry is deep golden brown and cooked through, 20-25 minutes longer. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serves 4.

Patricia wellls tarte aux pommes a la creme

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My step mom made this for Christmas Dessert – amazing!!

Crust:
1 c flour
7 TBSP butter
2 tsp sugar
1/8 tsp salt
3 TBSP cold water

Preheat oven to 375.

Process course meal. For into a ball and refrigerate 1 hour. Roll out to fill a 10 inch tart pan. Press into shell, top with parchment and pie weight and bake about 10 – 15 minutes until starting to brown.

Tart
3 large egg yolks
1/2 tsp almond extract
3/4 c creme fraiche
3 TBSP, 2 TBSP to sprinkle on top
1 parbaked crust
5 apples, peeled and cut into 8 slices

Preheat oven to 375.

Whisk together eggs, extract, creme and 3 TBSP sugar.

Place the cut apples just inside the rim of the pan in a circle slightly overlapping into 2 or 3 concentric circles. Pour creme over the apples and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake for 45 minutes until filling is set and apples Are nicely browned and puffy.

Serves 8.

Butternut Squash Tart

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This recipe is adapted from Bon Appetit – I love the honey jalapeño glaze.

Ingredients:
1 sheet of frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 egg light beaten, plus1 tsp water
1 butternut squash, peeled and sliced into 1/8 inch rounds
1 TBSP olive oil
1/4 c honey
1 thinly sliced jalapeño
2 TBSP olive oil
12 fresh sage leaves
1/4 c shaved Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with parchment.

Roll out puffed pastry to a 10 inch square. Transfer to baking sheet. Brush with egg and water mixture. Arrange squash slices on the pastry slightly overlapping. Salt and pepper the squash, lay a piece of parchment on top and the. Place a large baking sheet on top. Bake for 10 minutes.

Remove top pan and parchment, brush squash with 1 TBSP olive oil. Return to oven and bake until pastry is golden brown, 30 minutes or so.

In a small pan, combine honey, jalapeño and 2 TBSP of water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and boil until thickened and syrupy about 6 minutes.

Heat 2 TBSP olive oil in a medium pan over medium high heat. Cook safe leaves about 1 minute until crispy. Drain on paper towels.

Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over tart, drizzle with chile honey mixture and garnish with safe. Cut into slices and serve.

Serves 4.

Bourbon-Caramel Pumpkin Tart

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This is one of the desserts that is a labor of love and worth every minute of labor! I made this for turkey day and it was amazing. Thanks of fine cooking for the inspiration!

For the pumpkin seeds
Cooking spray
1-1/2 tsp agave syrup
3/4 tsp sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 c pumpkin seeds

For the crust
6 oz flour, more as needed
6 TBSP fine cornmeal
1 TBSP sugar
1/2 tsp salt
4 oz. cold butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk

For the caramel
1/2 c packed light brown sugar
1 oz. butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 tsp salt
1 c heavy cream
1/4 c bourbon

For the filling
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2/3 c brown sugar
2 large egg
2 large egg yolk
1 can (15 oz) canned pure pumpkin purée
4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
Pinch of salt
1 c half-and-half

Candy the pumpkin seeds
Position a rack in the bottom third of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Line a small baking sheet with parchment and lightly coat it with cooking spray.

Combine the corn syrup, sugar, and salt in a small bowl. Add the pumpkin seeds, stir, and spread in a single layer on the prepared sheet. Bake, stirring halfway through, until golden-brown, about 7 minutes. Cool on a rack until crisp, about 5 minutes, and then break into small clusters.

Make the crust
Pulse the flour, cornmeal, sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture looks like coarse meal.

Combine the egg, egg yolk, and 1 Tbs. ice water in a small bowl. Add the egg mixture to the processor and pulse until the mixture just comes together, adding more water, 1 tsp at a time, as needed, up to 2 TBSP. Dump the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap and use the wrap to help gather the dough into a disk. Wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

On a floured work surface with a floured rolling pin, roll the dough out into a 13-inch circle.

Carefully transfer the dough to a 9-inch springform pan, gently pressing it into the bottom and up the sides of the pan without stretching it. Use the rolling pin to cut the dough the goes over the edge of the pan. Prick the crust with a fork in 1 inch intervals. Line with aluminum foil and fill with dried ben of theCover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 24 hours.

Position a rack in the bottom third of the oven and heat the oven to 350°. Bake until the edges are firm, about 15 minutes.

Carefully remove the foil and beans. Return the crust to the oven and bake, rotating the pan once and popping any bubbles with a toothpick, just until the bottom is firm, about 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes. Leave the oven on.

Make the caramel
In a 2-quart saucepan, cook the brown sugar, butter, and salt over medium heat, stirring until the sugar melts and begins to darken around the edges, about 5 minutes. Slowly whisk in the cream (some sugar will seize) and simmer, whisking occasionally, until smooth and thick enough that the whisk leaves the bottom of the pan visible, 7 to 9 minutes.

Whisk in the bourbon and simmer, whisking occasionally, until the whisk leaves the bottom of the pan visible again, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a heatproof measuring cup. Pour 1/3 c of the caramel over the bottom of the cooled crust and spread it evenly with a small offset spatula. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to set the caramel. (Leave the remaining caramel at room temperature.)

Make the filling and bake
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl using a hand mixer), beat the cream cheese and brown sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1-1/2 minutes. Add the egg and then the egg yolk, beating until well combined. Add the pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and salt and mix until thoroughly combined. Reduce the speed to low and mix in the half-and-half.

Slowly pour the filling into the crust. Bake until the filling has puffed slightly and its surface no longer appears wet, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on a rack until the filling is completely cooled and firm, about 1 hour.

If the remaining caramel is no longer pourable, warm it in a microwave in 20-second bursts, whisking between bursts, until pourable, about 80 seconds total. Drizzle the remaining caramel over the pie and spread it evenly. Arrange the pumpkin seeds around the edge of the tart, cover the pan with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.

To serve, run a thin knife around the edge of the tart and remove the side of the pan. Transfer to a serving plate and serve.

Serves 10 – 12.

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