Monday, February 13, 2012

CHOCOLATE AND SALTED CARAMEL TARTLETS

CHOCOLATE PASTRY
2/3 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tbsp cocoa
1/2 stick butter
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 egg yolk

Sift the flour and cocoa into a mixing bowl; rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.  Add the sugar and egg yolk and ,using your fingers, mix together into a soft dough; add a little cold water if mixture is too dry.  Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for one hour.

Preheat ven to 350 degrees.
12 mini tartlet tins, greased; set aside.
On a flour-dusted surface, roll out the pastry to a thickness of 1/8-inch.  Use a sharp knife to cut out 12 squares slightly larger than the tartlet baking pans and press one into each pan, trimming away any excess pastry.  Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.  Line each tartlet pan with baking parchment and fill with baking beans.  Bake in the preheated oven for 12 to 15 minutes, until crisp.  Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely.  Remove the beans and parchment.

SALTED CARAMEL
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp water
1/2 stick butter
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp heavy cream

Heat the sugar and water in a saucepan set over gentle heat.  Remove the pan from the heat as soon as the mixture stars to turn golden brown.  Add the butter, salt, and cream and return to the heat, until the butter has melted.  Pour a little of the mixture into the base of each cooled tartlet case.

CHOCOLATE GANACHE
3 half ounces dark chocolate
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp light corn syrup
12 silver gragees, to decorate if desired

Place the chocolate, cream, and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (or use a double-boiler).  Take care not to let the base of the bowl touch the water.  Stir until the chocolate and butter have melted and blended.  Remove from the heat and beat in the syrup.  Pour a little into each tartlet case.  Leave to partially set, then top each with a silver dragee.  Let set completely before serving.

May be kept for 3 days in an airtight container.




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