|Chocolate Fleur de Sel Caramel Tart|
Adapted from Pie it Forward, Gesine Bullock-Prado
This is sophisticated candy bar wrapped up in a tart's clothing.It features caramel that leaves rosy tendrils behind after you've taken a bite. And while you can use a fork, I have to tell you it's so much easier to pick up your slice to convey it to your mandibles.
For the chocolate cookie tart crust: Whisk together the eggs, condensed milk, and coffee in a small bowl. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, pulse together the flour, cocoa, sugar, espresso powder (if using), and salt. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. While pulsing, add the liquid ingredients, and continue until the dough just holds together when you press it with your fingers. Turn the dough out onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Form it into a flat disk, cover it completely with the plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8-inch tart pan with the dough. Dock and freeze it for 20 minutes. Line the crust with parchment, fill it with pie weights, and bake it for 15 minutes. Remove the pie weights and parchment and bake the crust for 15 minutes more, or until the bottom is golden brown and baked through. Allow it to cool.
To make the soft caramel filling: Combine the sugar, 1/3 cup water, the corn syrup, and salt in a large, heavy saucepan and cook, stirring, over medium-low heat until the sugar has melted. Brush down the sides of the pan with a damp pastry brush to eradicate any errant sugar crystals. Stop stirring, increase the heat to medium-high, and clip on a candy thermometer. Heat the sugar syrup to 245 degrees F. Once the syrup has reached temperature, take the pan off the heat and carefully add the butter and cream. The mixture will bubble vigorously at first. Stand back and let the hot sugar do its molten dance. When the syrup has calmed, stir until the butter has completely melted. Add the vanilla and stir again. Pour the caramel immediately into the cooled crust. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.
For the truffles: In a small, heavy saucepan, simmer together the cream, butter, salt, and corn syrup, if using, in a small, heavy saucepan, making sure the butter melts completely. Take the pan from the heat and add the chocolate. Allow it to sit for a few minutes undisturbed, then whisk the mixture until the glaze emulsifies and all the chocolate melts. Cover and refrigerate until set, about 1 hour.
Using a melon scoop, a teaspoon-sized cookie scoop, or a teaspoon, form small rounds of ganache and roll them into balls with your hands. Roll the truffles in cocoa powder to coat them evenly.
To assemble, place the truffles around the perimeter of the tart, sprinkle fleur de sel over all, and serve at room temperature.
Chocolate cookie tart makes enough dough for 2 8-inch tarts, 8 (4-inch) tarts, or 16 mini tarts. Soft caramel filling makes approximately 2 cups.
Recipes: Desserts, Pies, Caramel, Chocolate, Dairy, Kosher