This weekend I made my all time favorite dessert, a simple and decadent warm chocolate tart with the most amazing creamy texture. I first encountered it at Joel Robuchon’s three star Michelin restaurant in Paris. I had gone through his multi course tasting menu thinking nothing could top what I had just eaten when the waiter appeared at my table with a rolling cart full of pastries. It was love at first bite and I was determined to make this part of my repertoire at home. Luckily the recipe was published in Chef Robuchon’s book ‘Simply French’ co-authored by Patricia Wells. A recipe so simple anyone could make this at home.
I normally do not make a gluten free sweet crust, but I decided to try one from Beatrice Peltre’s absolutely beautiful, and well written cookbook ‘La Tartine Gourmande‘. I was completely captivated by her beautiful photography, engaging stories of growing up in France and inspired healthy recipes. In the introduction, she mentions how she had to stop eating wheat for a short time, and consequently experimented with various gluten free options. Now she uses alternative flours, not because they are gluten free, but because they taste better.
I was dubious until I tasted her sweet crust, made from a combination of rice and quinoa flours. Much to my amazement I actually liked it as much as the one I had been making for well over 20 years. This is a dessert you will make again and again. You will be equally delighted with whichever crust you choose.
I copied both Joel Robuchon and Beatrice’s sweet pastry dough recipe so you can try each, and decide for yourself. Hashtag us at #PistouAndPastis and we’ll share your creations all over social media.
The first step is making the dough; pick either gluten free or regular.
Gluten Free Sweet Pastry Dough
A gluten free sweet pastry crust perfect for tarts and galettes.
- 1/3 cup White Rice Flour
- 1/3 cup Quinoa Flour
- 1/3 cup Cornstarch
- 1.5 teaspoons Xanthan Gum
- 1/3 cup Powdered Sugar
- 1 Vanilla Bean split in half lengthwise and seeds scraped out, save pod for another use
- 8 Tablespoons unsalted Butter chilled and diced
- 1 Egg
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the dry ingredients.
Mix in the butter, and beat till it resembles coarse cornmeal.
Add the egg, then mix till the dough comes together into a bowl.
Refrigerate for two hours.
Sweet Pastry Dough
The most amazing sweet crust for tarts and galettes I have ever encountered.
- 1 vanilla bean scrape seed out
- 4 tablespoons soft butter
- 1/2 cup confectionary sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 cup flour overflowing
- pinch sea salt
Add vanilla bean seeds and bowl to a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Blend till aerated and smooth.
Add sugar, and process until thoroughly blended.
Add two egg yolks, and process till blended.
Add flour and process quickly. If the dough does not form a ball don't worry, you made it right.
Refrigerate for at least a few hours or even better, overnight.
Step two, regardless of your dough choice, it’s time to roll the dough.
Roll dough out slightly larger than whatever tart pan you use. I generally use either my 4X13 rectangle or an 8 inch round tart pan with a removable bottom.
Step three, fill the tart shell.
Wrap the chilled dough around your rolling pin, and unwind over the tart shell. Press dough deep down into the corners, letting a 1/4 inch hang over the edges. Crimp the edges tightly then let the dough relax for 30 minutes in your refrigerator to relax the dough.
Bittersweet Chocolate Tart
An irresistibly cream and rich chocolate tart best served when it comes out of the oven and is still warm.
- 14 ounces Valrhona Manjari chocolate 64%
- 2/3 cup Milk
- 1 - 1/2 cups Heavy Cream
- 2 Eggs beaten
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Chop chocolate into small pieces, reserve.
Bring milk and cream to a boil, then pour over chocolate.
Stir until smooth and all the chocolate in melted. Resist using a whisk because it will make air bubbles that will impair the visual appeal when cooked.
Beat both eggs and stir into filling, reserve.
Bake tart shell in oven until very lightly browned, about ten minutes.
Pour chocolate filling in, then continue baking till filling is just set, about 20 minutes. The chocolate will feel slightly firm, almost like a perfect creme brulee.
Let cool for a few moments than eat!