I never really bother to roll out tart dough: why roll when you can press is my motto 😉 I know it is the easy way out but it works fine for me.
It’s not the rolling itself I dislike but what you have to do after that: transferring the dough in one piece into a baking tin and making sure it fits nicely.
I don’t even remember the first time I did try but I remember I didn’t like it….and still don’t (like the other roll out thing). However, being a person who bakes on a regular basis I thought I should be able to roll out dough too. So behold: a tart with dough I actually rolled out! It worked out pretty good, even though I need to pratice getting it neatly into the baking pan. I rolled the rolling pin over it before pressing it a little bit against the sides so there was a little bit too much dough in some places…practice makes perfect, right?
The crust recipe I used is Donna’s sweet shortcrust dough from Classics Book 2. It is the one I use for pretty much all my crusts. I settled for a chocolate ganache filling but wasn’t sure about an extra flavour. Should I infuse the cream with something or just keep it as is and add something else to fill the crust? So many important choices a baker must make 😉
In the end I went with something I made for last SHF: Haagse Hopjes or coffee caramels. I still had most of them tucked away in my cupboard. Not because were not tasty but – I did not mention this in the original post – I couldn’t cut more than a few caramels because the mixture had cooled down too much. When I first cut them, it was too soon so the cut marks were gone after some time. The second time I was just in time to cut only a few caramels in the middle, the rest of the mixture was already too hard to cut. In other words, I had a few big pieces of caramel that were not very convenient to nibble on. Luckily I discovered that you can recook caramel. You just dissolve the caramels in water and cook till the required temperature. To make the original caramels I cooked them to hard crack stage, this time I cooked them till soft ball. That way the caramel would stay soft. I used the caramel as the bottom layer, the chocolate ganache was poured over the caramel. The dot decoration is white chocolate. I like making dot decoration as you can see here, here and here.
The tart tin I used was about 10 x 34 cm (4 x 14 in).
Notes to myself when making something similar:
– cooking caramels to soft ball is too soft to use as filling at roomtemperature, that is if you don’t want the caramel to sip out when you cut the tart (the recipe below is the corrected version of medium ball stage)
– don’t rush to finish the tart before you go to bed and pour ganache over caramel that has not properly cooled down. If you do, expect the caramel to creep up at the sides instead of staying on the bottom of the crust 😉
– when piping chocolate dots, lift the piping bag in an upward motion instead of a sideward motion in order to create neat dots that don’t have to be corrected by piping bigger dots on top of them
– make sure the tart is level when put in the fridge that way the tart filling will be level too
– don’t use your silicon roll out mat because 2 sheets of baking paper works much better
As for the taste: the ganache was delicious in its simplicity. The coffee caramel taste was not very present, I think because mine was to fluid and therefore it blended with ganache too quickly when taking a bite. I suspect that a more set caramel would solve this ‘problem’.
Sweet shortcrust pastry (from Modern Classics Book 2 by Donna Hay)
270 g (2 cups) flour
3 tbs caster sugar
150 g (5 oz) cold butter, diced
2-3 tbs ice water
Process the flour, sugar and butter in a foodprocessor until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. With the motor running add enough water for the dough to cling together. Knead lightly and wrap in plastic wrap. Allow to sit in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180Â°C (350Â°F).
Roll out the dough between 2 sheets of baking paper until 2-3 mm (â…› in) thick. Line the greased tart tin. Blind bake for 10 minutes. Remove the baking weights and bake for another 10 minutes or until the crust is golden.
about 300 g (10 Â½ oz) Haagse Hopjes (or other coffee caramels)
1- 1 Â½ cups water
Dissolve the Haagse Hopjes in the water on low heat. Turn the heat up to medium and allow to cook till 118-121Â°C (245-250Â°F or medium ball stage). Pour the caramel into the baked pie crust. Allow to cool completely.
200 g (7 oz) bittersweet chocolate (70%)
200 ml (6 Â¾ fl. oz) whipping cream
Chop the chocolate in Â½ cm (Â¼ in) pieces. Transfer to a bowl. Bring the cream to a boil. Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 1 minute. Stir until well combined. Pour the ganache over the caramel filled crust. Allow to cool completely.
White chocolate decoration
30 g (1 oz) white chocolate, chopped
Melt the chocolate and transfer to a piping bag made out of baking paper. Snip off the tip and pipe dots onto the ganache.