Friday, May 30, 2014

Tart au Chocolat with Crunchy Crust

There are some recipes that you need to make before you convince yourself that they are good. Some others you just know immediately that you will love them. This Tart au Chocolat is one of those you know it's good even before making it. It uses only the simplest of the simplest ingredients, it contrasts textures and it's super chocolaty. You already know it's good, right?

My parents were visiting me this month of May and my dad has a really big sweet tooth but I rarely make him desserts when he's here because there's an amazing french patisserie close to my house where my dad visits daily and comes back home with 2 éclairs, 1 french baguette and 2 croissants. I'd make them dinner everyday but I never saw the need to actually make something sweet for them.  Few days before they left my dad said "my friends won't believe when I tell them that you never made me a dessert during my stay". Well.... I think I got his message. He wanted me to make one of my scrumptious desserts and you know what? I did it. I did it so well that my dad almost had an indigestion from eating too much chocolate.

Even though no sugar is added to the creamy filling and the chocolate used here is 70% this dessert is still sweet enough, mostly because of the crunchy crust that is a mixture between almond brittle and hazelnut paste. I have already taught you how to make almond brittle here and caramelized hazelnuts here but just in case I'll teach you all over again in this episode.
This tart is not baked and the chocolate, eggs and heavy cream are enough to harden it and to create a super smooth creamy texture. If you are in a hurry and you don't want to prepare the ingredients for the crust yourself you just have to buy a nice almond brittle and some hazelnut paste. That's it!

My dad has always played the acoustic guitar for fun (only at home). Mostly rock classics and brazilian music like bossa nova. Because of the complicated chords those songs requires- specially in brazilian songs- he'd never memorize the lyrics and since the age of 3 I was the one who sang along with him while he concentrated in all those crazy chords. To me, using my dad as part of this episode by playing live music just felt very natural. He is awesome and my best friend. I could say we are the perfect duo for music and life!

if you don't want to make the brittle I'd recommend using the 'English Toffee' sold at Trader Joe's. You will need 1 1/2 cups
 for almond brittle:
100g cup granulated sugar - 1/2 cup
85g light corn syrup - 1/4 cup
40ml water - 2 tbsp
pinch os salt
50g unsalted butter - 1/2 stick
1 tsp baking soda
70g chopped almonds - 1/2 cup
for hazelnut paste:
you can use store bought hazelnut paste or even hazelnut spread such as Nutella if you prefer. You will need 1/2 cup
200g granulated sugar - 1 cup
100g toasted hazelnuts - 3/4 cup 
for filing: 
2 eggs
460ml heavy cream - 1 1/2 cups
340g dark chocolate (minimum 60% I used 70%)
for caramelized hazelnut:
50g granulated sugar - 1/4 cup
10 hazelnuts

Utensils: Tart pan (I used a 12"x 5"), food processor or mixer, toothpick and parchment paper or silpat. 

Directions: To make the almond brittle add the sugar, light corn syrup, water and salt to a pan. Stir to combine and cook it over medium heat until it boils. As soon as it boils add the butter and let it cook until it caramelizes and gains a dark amber color. Turn off the heat, add the almonds and baking soda. Stir. Pour the mixture over a silpat or parchment paper and spread it evenly. Let it cool and break it in smaller pieces. 

To make the hazelnut paste add the hazelnuts to a baking pan. Bake it at 350F for 10 minutes or until fragrant. Rub it with a clean dishcloth to remove some of the skin. Add it to a food processor or mixer and process it until fine. In a pan add the sugar. Over medium heat stir until the sugar caramelizes completely. With the food processor or mixer still running, pour this hot caramel over the hazelnuts to form a paste.  

In a bowl add 1 1/2 cup of finely chopped brittle and 1/2 cup of hazelnut paste (if the paste is too hard microwave it for 15 seconds). Mix it with your hands to combine. Spread it in the bottom of your pan and press it to flatten. Refrigerate until needed.  It is possible that you will have leftover brittle and hazelnut paste. Both can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 6 months. 

To make the filling whisk the eggs together. In a pan add the heavy cream and wait just until it reaches a full boil and rise to the top of the pan. Immediately remove from heat and pour it over the eggs whisking constantly. Add the chopped chocolate to the warm mixture and stir it until smooth. 

Pour the chocolate mixture over the crust and refrigerate it for 1 hour at the top of your fridge (coldest part). Meanwhile make the garnish by melting 50g of sugar in a small pan over medium heat. Once melted, let it cool for 1 minute to thicken a little bit. Insert the tip of a toothpick in a hazelnut and dip it into the caramel. Lift it and place them in a place where they can harden, preferably hanging upside-down at the edges of your cabinet's door. 

Before serving, heat the edges of the pan to help unmold it. Slice the tart and place one caramelized hazelnut over each slice. This recipe yields one 12" x 5" Chocolate Tart (approximately 10 slices).


  1. Chorei quando seu pai tocou Cat Stevens... lembrou o meu pai, que já deixou esse mundo há 10 anos. Ele também tocava violão e eu cantava, mas agora o meu irmão é quem faz o papel do meu pai nas músicas que rolam aqui em casa (ainda com o mesmo repertorio rs). No mais... foi só alegria! Certamente farei essa delícia o quanto antes!!!

    1. Awwww.... fiquei com o coração apertado de ler isso. Espero que o episódio tenha trazido mais lembranças alegres que tristes <3

    2. Ahhhhh... Com certeza só lembrei de coisas boas!!! :)

  2. Oh, my - this looks delicious!

  3. And she's baaaack. Please don't ever do this again OK :-))))

  4. i love all of your videos, but this one is really special. maybe you should have live music in every video!

    great work : )

  5. wonderful ! I love the video the cake and the music and intend to try it !!!

  6. This is very much a work in progress whenever I find out about one who is more beautiful than any of these I will add her and kick out number ten Thanks for sharing the informative post.

  7. Gorgeous tart! It looks perfect!

  8. Hello Raiza,
    I really love all of your recipes, especially the chocolaty ones! :)

    Please, could you tell me the name of the song your dad sung? I fell in love with it and Shazam can't tell me its name :(

    Best wishes from Switzerland!

    1. The Wind - Cat Stevens :)

  9. Amei <3 Que delicia!!!!! E o seu pai tocando......hummmmm, ficou o máximo!!!!!!!!! Beijos Querida e muito Sucesso!!!!!! :)

  10. Wonderful video! I loved it and will definitely be back for more recipes. Your dad's music was just perfect!

  11. Haaaaa wonderful, I love this video more and more as the others. really fun.
    And this tarte au chocolat (yes I writte the E to the end of tarte because i'm french ^^) is sooooo good, and the entire desert is so beautiful, thank you for this desert of the week ^^

  12. Hey Raiza! Yeah....You are back!!!!! But it just paid off to wait! Great Tutorial, great Tarte and super great live music :-)
    Just had a bad weekend and I was not in a good mood until I watched your new video.Now you pushed me much happier and with a smile on my face into the new week! Thank You!!!!!

    Best wishes from Germany!!


  13. Again a great episode, thanks a lot & keep on the good work! May I ask were I can find those blue plates, or of which brand they are? Greetings from Belgium, I whish you a life full of pleasant surprises! Looking forward to your next video ^^

  14. I like what you bring it very tasty and nutritious

  15. Your actions are all very supportive and appreciate

  16. just look at it as I only want to enjoy it right then

  17. you have brought all the people sharing the most interesting and rewarding

  18. I was very happy to bring joy to you

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  21. Dear Raiza, Don´t you use any sugar in the filling?

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  23. So I picked the hottest most humid day in the world to make this... Therefore, not as beautiful as yours, but sure is delicious (I'd have to taste yours to find out if it's as good ;).
    Also, for a person who is afraid of making caramel, I made a ton of it (and discovered I need a smaller pan for it...). But hey, fear = conquered :)
    Thanks! you are the best, yours are the only videos I watch (for real, I don't like vlogs and all that stuff..).

  24. I just wanted to let you know that what you do really affects peoples lives and that people - like me - truly appreciate it.

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