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Friday, August 21, 2015

Recipe: Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart


Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart

Recipe: Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart



Espresso and Chocolate form one of those undeniable flavor combinations, perhaps rivaled only by the perfection that is Peanut Butter and Chocolate. And since not every dessert can feature Peanut Butter (what did he say?!?!?), I thought a Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart would be a fitting way to highlight the deliciousness that is Chocolate Ganache.

I can only guess how much caffeine is packed into each slice. Yes, this dessert may cause heart palpitations. And talk about rich! I'd recommend serving each slice with a tall, cold glass of milk (see, Mom... calcium!).

Slice of Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart
A well-executed Ganache Tart is a thing of beauty. It should have a glass-like finish with an unblemished shine. The texture should be perfectly smooth. And the Ganache should be of a consistency that is both extremely soft, yet firm enough to hold its shape when cut. Sounds simple, right?

Unbaked Pate Brisee Tart Shell
In some ways, the crust is incidental. Let's face it - I'm all about the Ganache. But a delicious filling deserves a vessel to match.

Start by making a tart dough. Either Pate Brisee or Pate Sucree will work. I prefer Pate Brisee for this dessert, as it is lighter and flakier than the more cookie-like Pate Sucree.

Roll the dough into a 10" circle approximately 1/4" thick. Line a tart ring with the dough and chill the mold for 30 minutes. When chilled, trim the edges of the Tart Shell, dock the bottom and apply a light egg wash.

Blind Baked Pate Brisee Tart Shell
Blind bake the Tart Shell at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius) until it is golden brown - approximately 30 minutes. Set the Tart Shell aside to cool as you prepare the Espresso Ganache.

Heavy Cream Infused with Espresso Beans
To make an Espresso Cream Infusion, combine Heavy Cream and Espresso Beans in a large pot over medium-high heat. When the mixture reaches a boil, remove the pot from the heat and let the ingredients steep, covered, for 30 minutes, and then strain the Beans from the Espresso Infusion.

When a recipe uses a liquid that has been infused, it is important to reweigh the liquid after the ingredients have steeped. A significant amount of moisture will be lost when the liquid is heated. In this recipe, even more moisture is lost as the Espresso Beans absorb some of the Cream. 

Bowl of Finely Chopped Dark Chocolate
Chop the Chocolate into very small pieces that will melt easily.

Melting Chocolate with Warm Espresso Infused Cream
Reheat the Espresso Infusion to around 120 degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celsius). Pour the Infusion over the Chocolate and let the mixture sit for several minutes before stirring.

Chocolate does not need to be very warm to melt. If the Cream is too hot, it will take longer for the Ganache to set. It will also destroy more of the good Beta Crystals that give a tempered Chocolate its structure. Although a Ganache is not a tempered product, preserving some of these Beta Crystals will result in a better consistency. 

Fully Emulsified Chocolate Espresso Ganache
Emulsify the Cream and Chocolate. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, stir in circles, starting at the center of the bowl and slowly working outwards as the Cream and Chocolate come together.

You can also use a whisk or hand blender to emulsify the Ganache. However, it is important to mix gently. Beating air into the mixture will create bubbles in the Ganache.

If all of the Chocolate has not melted, gently heat the mixture over a double boiler, placing the bowl over the heat for just a few seconds at a time.

Once the Ganache is well emulsified, stir in the Butter and Glucose (or Corn Syrup) until it is well-combined. Make sure that the Butter is at room temperature and cut into small pieces. This will make it much easier to incorporate.

Filling the Tart Shell with Ganache
While the Espresso Ganache is still warm, gently pour it into the cooled Tart Shell. Make sure that the Tart Shell is on a level surface. If there are any bubbles in the Ganache, quickly pass over the surface with a culinary torch.  

Set Slice of Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart
Allow the Ganache Tart to cool and set completely at room temperature. The Tart is best served the day it is made, but it will keep for several days. The Tart should not be refrigerated as the cold temperature will harden the Ganache. 



- The Recipe -




Chocolate Espresso Ganache Tart:


Yield: One 8"/9" Tart

Ingredients:


  • Heavy Cream: 360g (1.5 Cups)
  • Espresso Beans: 150g

  • Espresso Infused Cream: 180g (0.75 Cups)
  • Dark Chocolate, finely chopped: 150g
  • Butter, cubed: 55g (0.5 Stick / 0.25 Cup)
  • Glucose / Corn Syrup: 20g (1 Tbls)


Directions:

1. Prepare the tart dough, wrap it in plastic wrap and allow it to rest and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before rolling. When the dough is rested and chilled, roll it into a 10" circle of approximately 1/4" thickness. Line an 8" or 9" tart ring with the dough and return it to the refrigerator to rest and chill for another 30 minutes.

2As the dough chills, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius). When the dough is chilled, trim the edges with a sharp paring knife. Gently dock the dough and lightly brush it with egg wash. Blind bake the Tart Shell until it is golden brown - approximately 30 minutes. Set the Tart Shell aside to cool.

3. Infuse the Cream with the Espresso. Combine the Cream and Espresso Beans in a large pot over medium-high heat. As soon as the mixture reaches a boil, remove the pot from the heat and set it aside, covered, to steep for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, strain the Cream and discard the Espresso Beans. Reweigh the Espresso Cream Infusion. If you do not have the 180g required for the recipe, add some additional Cream.

Chef's Note: When making an infusion, it is important to reweigh the liquid when you are done. The ingredients used to make the infusion may absorb a material amount of moisture from the Cream. Additional moisture will be lost through evaporation when the Cream is heated.

4. Finely chop the Chocolate and place it in a large mixing bowl. Reheat the Espresso Cream Infusion to approximately 120 degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celsius). The Cream should be very warm to touch, but not boiling. Pour the warm Cream over the finely chopped Chocolate and allow the Chocolate to melt for several minutes.

5. After several minutes, emulsify the Cream and Chocolate. Using a wood spoon or spatula, begin by stirring in small circles at the center of the bowl, slowly working outwards as the Chocolate and Cream come together. Continue stirring until the mixture is completely combined. If some of the Chocolate is not entirely melted, the bowl can be placed over a double boiler and gently heated.

Chef's Note: You can also use a whisk or a hand blender to emulsify the Ganache; however, be careful not to beat air into the Ganache. Trapped air will result in bubbles in the Ganache.

6. Once the Ganache has come together, add the cubed Butter and Glucose (or Corn Syrup). Stir the mixture until the Butter is completely melted and all of the ingredients are well combined.

Chef's Note: Use room temperature Butter that has been cubed into small pieces. It will be easier to incorporate into the Ganache.

7. While it is still warm and fluid, carefully pour the Ganache into the cooled Tart Shell. Make sure that the Tart Shell is on a level surface. If there are any bubble in the Ganache, quickly pass over the surface with a culinary torch. Allow the Espresso Ganache Tart to cool and set completely at room temperature.


Storage:

- The Tart is best served the day it is made, but it will keep for several days. The Tart should not be refrigerated as the cold temperature will harden the Ganache.



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