Treat of the Week: Chocolate Tart with Mint Mascarpone Cream

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I’ve often wondered how someone stumbled upon the perfect pairing of chocolate and mint.  These two, it seems, were made for each other.  Apart, they each enjoy goodchemistry with a variety of other flavors, but when they come together it is sheer magic.  They are the Liz Taylor and Richard Burton of culinary couples.

chocolate-tart

chocolate-tart

Our treat for this week is a super simple chocolate tart paired with mint mascarpone cream.  I first made this mint mascarpone cream for Pineapple Upside Down Cheesecake, but it truly has found a better home here.  Mint and chocolate are once again happily together on a single plate.

savour… perfect matches

Chocolate Tart with Mint Mascarpone Cream

Before you start:

Letting this cool completely before serving will allow it to dry out a bit and, yes, a ‘pudding skin’ will form.  That’s intentional.

You may wish to adjust the mint up or down.  This produces an adequate mint flavor, but if you prefer more intense mint add a few extra leaves.

chocolate-tart2

chocolate-tart2

The ingredients:

For the crust:

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs, finely ground
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 stick unsalted butter

For the filling:

  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 ounces semisweet chocolate
  • 3 ounces dark chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened

For the cream:

  • 4 oz. mascarpone cream
  • 4 oz. heavy whipping cream
  • 12-15 mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

The method:

For the crust:

  1. Preheat oven to 325˚.
  2. Add all ingredients together in a small bowl.  Use a fork to combine them to a coarse sand consistency.
  3. Mash the crumbs into your tart pan.
  4. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  5. Allow to cool completely.

For the filling:

  1. Gather your materials and ingredients.
  2. Whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, cocoa powder and starch in a heatproof bowl.
  3. Whisk in 1/2 cup of the milk and mix well.
  4. Whisk in one egg yolk at a time.
  5. Set this mixture aside.
  6. Place heavy whipping cream and remaining milk in a saucepan.  Bring to just boiling, stirring frequently.
  7. Remove from heat.
  8. Slowly pour the heated milk mixture into the chocolate/egg mixture while whisking.
  9. Transfer the pudding mixture to a clean saucepan and cook over medium heat.
  10. Stir constantly until thickened (about 4 or 5 minutes).
  11. Remove from heat and pour into heatproof bowl through strainer into heatproof bowl.
  12. With a rubber spatula, stir in butter and vanilla.
  13. Add 1 ounce semisweet chocolate and 3 ounces dark chocolate to bowl.
  14. Stir until well combined.
  15. Cool for about 3 minutes before pouring mixture into prepared crust.  Smooth top with rubber spatula.
  16. Cool, uncovered, completely before covering loosely with plastic wrap and storing in refrigerator.
  17. Top with Mint Mascarpone Cream to serve.

For the cream:

  1. Muddle the mint leaves and the sugar together with a pestle and mortar.
  2. Add the mixture to a bowl with cheese and whipping cream.
  3. With the whish attachment start whipping on low speed and work up to highest speed.
  4. Whip until stiff peaks form (around 2 - 3 minutes).
  5. Store in refrigerator.