Bittersweet Chocolate Tart

Hope you left room for some dessert so that you can indulge in this delectable bittersweet chocolate tart filled with a creamy chocolate custard. Bon Appetit !



Bittersweet Chocolate Tart
Makes a 23 cm (9 in.) tart

For the pastry shell

  • 1 plump vanilla bean
  • 2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 60 gm ( ½ cup) icing sugar, sifted
  • 2 tabs whole blanched almonds
  • 100 gm ( ¾ cup) plain flour, sifted
  • Pinch of salt
  • 70 gm (5 tabs) unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the filling

  • ¾ cup double cream
  • a third of a cup of milk
  • 200 gm (7oz.) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 50 gm (5 tabs) chopped orange peel, optional
  • ½ tsp unsweetened cocoa powder for sifting

To make the pastry shell

Flatten the vanilla bean and cut it in half lengthwise. With a small spoon, scrape the seeds into a small bowl. Add the egg yolks and stir to blend.

In a food processor, combine the sugar and almonds and process until the nuts are finely ground. Add the flour and salt and process to blend. Add the butter and process just until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the egg yolks and pulse until the dough just about begins to hold together; do not over process – the dough should not form a ball. Gently pat the dough into a disc, handling it as little as possible. Wrap dough in wax paper and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 1 hr or overnight.

Butter the bottom and side of a 23 cm (9in) fluted tart pan with a removable bottom.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a 28 cm (11in) round. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan and gently press the dough against the side, allowing about 1 cm (½ in) to hang over the rim. Prick the bottom of the dough all over with a fork.
Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 1 hr.

Preheat the oven to 190C/375F.

Set the tart pan on a baking sheet and bake in the middle of the oven for about 5 mins. just until the pastry begins to firm up. Remove from the oven and, with a sharp knife, carefully cut off and discard the overhanging pastry to make a smooth, even rim. Return the shell to the oven and bake for about 15- 20 mins longer until the pastry is well browned all over.

Transfer to a rack and let cool completely before filling. Leave the oven on.

To make the filling

In a medium saucepan, bring the cream and milk to a simmer. Remove from the heat, add the chocolate and stir until melted. Let cool to lukewarm, then whisk in the egg until thoroughly blended. Stir in the candid orange peel.

Pour the custard into the pastry shell and bake in the middle of the oven for 12 to 15 mins, or until the filling is almost set but still trembling in the centre. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Sift the cocoa powder over the tart and serve warm or at room temperature. It is also delicious served chilled.


Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley

Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley Walking TourOn our Peru: Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley Walking Vacation, travelers visit Ollantaytambo, where the homes and streets have not changed dramatically since Incan times.  Our travelers have their choice of places to eat for lunch, including Hearts Café.  Hearts Café, run by Sonia Newhouse, is not only known for its delicious cuisine but its also known for its great humanitarian projects, which support the women and children of the highland communities.

At age 71 Sonia Newhouse moved from the UK to Peru to start a new life.  It was then that she discovered the poor living and health conditions of the women and children she encountered living in the Peruvian Highlands and made it her mission to help them.  In 2007 Sonia founded the Hearts Café, whose main goal is to raise funds and create awareness for the community surrounding the Sacred Valley.  The café works in association with Sonia’s NGO, Living Hearts Association.  In addition to donations, 100% of the profits from the café go towards Living Heart’s humanitarian projects, which focus on educational support, medical support, nutrition, family planning, water purification, and sustainability.  Living Heart is also currently in the process of creating a home for abused women and abandoned children.

To learn more about their work on the Sacred Valley or if you would like to learn how you could support any of the projects check out their website


Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley Walking Tour Machu Picchu & the Sacred Valley Walking Vacation