Sunday, February 10, 2013

Chocolate & Ginger Tarts

Who can resist the lovely glossy lure of chocolate ganache! Combine it with pastry and preserved ginger and you've got a special treat. These lovely little tarts will earn you brownie points with your loved ones...or you could just save them all for yourself ;-)
The pastry was an interesting recipe containing flour, ground almonds, icing sugar, salt, unsalted butter, vanilla seeds and an egg yolk. Once baked it held together well and it was nice and light. The tart cases were blind baked with baking beans but if you don't have beans you can use rice. To more easily line each case with baking parchment, scrunch up the parchment before lining as this means it sits more easily inside the case.
 
I've used this muffin pan method before to make Mini Mississippi Mud Pies and it does give you nice little tarts but the effect is rather rustic...but this is an Edd Kimber recipe and Edd's tarts were rustic too!
Preserved Stem Ginger in Syrup is easy to find at the supermarket, I picked some up at Tescos. Each little tart has a secret cache of finely chopped ginger hidden at the bottom and chocolate and ginger are perfect partners.
The filling for the tarts is a classic chocolate ganache. The ganache included the addition of light brown muscovado sugar, this always gives a little bit of a fudgy taste and it also gives sweetness which cuts through the dark chocolate to provide balance. Once ready 40g of unsalted butter was added to the ganache, when mixed in this gives a lovely glossy finish.
The easiest way to fill the tart cases is to transfer the prepared ganache into a measuring jug and then pour the required amount into each one. The pastry recipe made 12 cases but mine were quite large so I only had enough ganache to fill 10 cases fully and I would have liked to have filled these 10 a little more!
To give an extra special finish to the tarts I used a little edible gold leaf on the top of each one. You can get edible gold leaf from most cake decorating shops or websites, mine came from Surbiton Sugarart.
You can buy it as a sheet or flaked in a little pot. It is reasonably expensive with the pot above costing £4.35 but it does add that extra sparkle to a special bake.
These tarts neatly fit into two baking challenges this month. The first is We Should Cocoa, with usual host Choclette from Choc Log Blog taking a break it's hosted by Jen from Blue Kitchen Bakes this month. We Should Cocoa was co-created by Chele at Chocolate Teapot and the theme this month is 'Chocolate and Ginger'.
The second challenge is Classic French, again hosted by Jen from Blue Kitchen Bakes. This challenge aims to help us tackle a different French classic each month, this month the theme is Chocolate Ganache...so again these fit in perfectly!

Ingredients

275g plain flour
25g ground almonds
50g icing sugar
1/2 tsp salt
175g unsalted butter
1 large egg yolk
1-2 tbsp ice-cold water
1 vanilla pod (seeds)
4 pieces of preserved stem ginger in syrup, finely chopped

Chocolate Ganache

225g dark chocolate
185 ml double cream
45g light brown sugar or light brown muscovado
40g unsalted butter, softened and cut into cubes

Makes 12

Start by making the pastry and preheating the oven to 180c/160c fan/gas 4. The recipe suggests making this by hand...but I cheated and used a food processor...you could obviously do it either way. I put the flour, icing sugar, almonds and salt into the food processor and then added the cubed unsalted butter. Then whiz the mixture until it resembles rough breadcrumbs. At this stage add the egg yolk and ice-cold water and whiz again. The initial recipe suggested a tablespoon of water, however I found I needed two. Turn out the pastry on to the counter and then bring together by hand. Squash into a disc and then wrap in clingfilm before putting it into the fridge for 30 minutes to an hour.

Once the pastry is ready, take it out of the fridge adn leave to rest at room temperature for 10 minutes. Whilst it's resting, lightly grease a 12-hole muffin pan. Lightly dust your work surface with flour and then roll out the pastry to a thickness of 3-4mm (I used spacers). Using a 10cm circular cutter, cut out 12 discs of pastry, you may need to re-roll a couple of times. Put each disc into one of the holes in the muffin pan and press in gently. Then line each tart with baking parchment before filling each one with baking beans. If you don't have baking beans you can use rice.. Bake for 12-15 minutes, then remove the parchment and beans and bake for another 5-10 minutes or until golden. Leave to cool in the pan before filling. Be gentle when removing from the muffin pan.

Finely chop the preserved ginger and sprinkle in the base of each tart. Next make the chocolate ganache by finely chopping up the chocolate and putting it in a bowl. Then put the double cream and light brown sugar in a small saucepan and heat on medium until just coming to the boil. Pour this cream mixture over the chocolate and leave for two minutes until gently stirring together. Add the butter and stir to combine, you should end up with a lovely glossy, silky ganache.

Finally, pour the ganache into each tart case, I used a jug for ease. Allow to set for one hour before serving. You can then add a little more chopped ginger on top and/or some edible gold leaf. This goes really well with whipped cream.

* Adapted from Edd Kimber's Say it With Cake.

22 comments:

  1. These look really pretty! Great flavour combination, and I love the almond pastry as well!
    The Pantry Door

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  2. These look lovely Laura and I really like the gold leaf decoration.

    A friend left the country the other day and donated the contents of her pantry to me, so this is a pefect use for the stem ginger I now have!

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  3. Those tarts look wonderful Laura and sound absolutely delicious, I love chocolate and ginger. I like the idea of adding vanilla seeds to the pastry and the gold leaf adds such a touch of elegance. Great entry for We Should Cocoa, thank you.

    I answered your EYB question back on my blog.

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  4. When I was young(er!) I never liked chocolate and ginger together - now I love it. It's funny how our tastes change over time. Your tarts looks delicious; I love how deep they are - room for lots of filling!

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  5. So I would totally be eating all those myself....

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  6. that filling looks delicious! Yeah I would try and eat them on my own...but I have 3 sisters so I would fail!
    http://mycupcakehabit.blogspot.co.uk

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  7. These sound fantastic! What a wonderful sounding flavour combination. Mmm!

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  8. I love this flavour combination, and your mini tarts look delicious ! x

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  9. These look and sound scrumptious! I love ginger and garlic, never have combined both. I will definitely have to give this a whirl. Thanks for sharing!

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

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  10. They look wonderful!! How delicious these little tarts and adding stem ginger is a nice touch. I have never tried it though. Something new for me. Thank you!

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  11. I've been looking for things to do with stem ginger, I will be including this recipe in my next 'Thing To Do With...' post!

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  12. These are super cute! I love the rustic look! I'm definitely going to try out your mini pie tart technique soon!

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  13. These look beautiful, and I bet they tasted absolutely amazing!

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  14. Gorgeous little tarts - love the sound of ginger and chocolate. :)

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  15. Lovely tarts & I love ginger & chocolate combo ! YUM! :)

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  16. These chocolate almond and ginger tarts look amazing. I don't care very much for ginger, but with the chocolate thrown in, I'd eat a whole lot.

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  17. These are definitely on my to-do list they look like I wouldn't be able to stop at just 1 though! :)

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  18. Hi,

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  19. Hello name twin! I've only just discovered your blog and I'm so glad that I did! Your posts are so informative and the step-by-step photography is fantastic... not to mention your decorating skills! Gorgeous! I'll definitely be trying out this tart recipe. Chocolate ginger is one of my husband's favourite things and I think he'd love to see it presented in tart form! Thanks for sharing, and I'll definitely be following you from now on! xx

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  20. Oh yum! this looks very good indeed.

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  21. Thank you for superb ingredient. Freezing lasted therefore attained fabulous: -)
    Excellent blog page utilizing treat excellent recipes ourselves if you're involved. I have a blog with cake recipes myself if you are interested. You can find it at http://recipes-for-food.com/

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