Week 193: Salted espresso caramel and gianduja tartlets

So I am remaking all my favourite tarts with my new tart rings. Seriously, with these micro-perforated tart rings, making tart shells are almost addictive!

My method of lining the tart rings is a little unusual. I’d cut out strips to line the sides. For round tarts, normally just one ling strip. But for rectangular tarts, one strips for each side. Then, I’d roll out a large piece of tart dough and press the lined rings onto the rolled out dough. Weird, I know. But somehow it works.

These new tart rings are not as deep as my previous set but I think it works out nicely as the filling consisting of caramel and ganache can be very rich. If only you can taste these little pastries.

For the pâte sucrée beurrée

150g unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into pieces

95g icing sugar, sifted

30g ground almond

2g fleur de sel de Guérande

1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste

50g egg, beaten (roughly 1 medium)

250g plain flour

1) In the bowl of a food processor, fitted with the blade, add the butter, icing sugar, ground almond, plain flour and fleur de sel. Process until mixture is well-mixer.

2) Then, add the egg and vanilla bean paste and process until the dough forms a ball.

3) Chill the tart dough in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before rolling it out to line the tart rings.

4) Blind bake the lined tart rings in an oven preheated to 175C fan for 15 minutes. Remove from oven to cool.

5) Remove cover and bake for a further 5 to 7 minutes at 175C fan until brown. 

For the salted espresso caramel

80g heavy cream

8g coffee beans, medium grind

Pinch of fleur de sel

1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste

80g sugar

40g milk chocolate couverture

8g unsalted butter

1) In a small pot, bring heavy cream, coffee beans and salt to a boil. Take off the heat, cover and allow to steep for 10 minutes.

2) Strain the cream to remove the coffee beans.

3) Add the vanilla bean paste to the coffee cream.

4) Cook the sugar without stirring, until it becomes a golden, amber caramel.

5) Carefully stir in the coffee cream until mixture is smooth.

6) Pour the coffee caramel onto the milk chocolate in a bowl. Allow to sit for a minute, then stir until chocolate has melted completely.

7) Add the butter and stir until caramel is smooth.

8) Pour 40g into each 8cm tart shell and allow to chill in the refrigerator until required.

For the gianduja milk chocolate ganache

57g hazelnut paste

142g milk chocolate couverture

114g heavy cream

Pinch of sea salt

42g unsalted butter, room temperature

1) Put hazelnut paste and milk chocolate into a bowl and melt it together over a bain-marie.

2) Bring the heavy cream and salt to a light boil, then pour this onto the chocolate mixture and stir until smooth.

3) When mixture has cooled to room temperature, stir in the butter. Ganache should be smooth and shiny.

4) Pour the ganache onto the espresso caramel in the tart shells. There should be about 35g of ganache in each tart shell.

For the whipped gianduja milk chocolate ganache

Remaining gianduja milk chocolate ganache

85g heavy cream

1) Bring the heavy cream to a light boil.

2) Pour the hot cream into the ganache and stir to incorporate.

3) Cover with cling wrap and allow to chill in the refrigerator overnight.

4) The next day, fill the whipped cream into a pastry bag fitted with a French star tip and pipe swirls on top of the chocolate ganache. Decorate with some toasted hazelnuts.

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