Chocolate Tart


With rare exception, I don’t make fancy desserts. I’m not a decorator by any stretch and I always judge a dessert by its taste, not its presentation. But there are times when looks matter, and sometimes a homey cake is too, well, humble. Whenever I’m looking for an elegant dessert, I make this simple chocolate tart. The filling is chocolate ganache, which takes 15 minutes to make (this includes scrubbing out the food processor bowl). The crust is pâte sablée.

Together you have the winning combination of velvet and crunch. Not too sweet. Very rich. I don’t usually serve this with anything but coffee, but if you must, go for slightly sweetened whipped cream and a couple of raspberries. Small slivers will do, so a 9-inch tart can serve 12 with a bit left over for breakfast. Come on, you’ve done it, too.

Chocolate Tart

You will need a fully baked, cooled tart crust. I always use pâte sablée.

Chocolate ganache is simply equal parts of cream and chocolate melted together, with a knob of butter added at the end. The trick to perfectly smooth ganache is not to overdo the stirring, as you want the least amount of air incorporated into the mix. I’ve found the food processor does double-duty here, both chopping the chocolate and blending in the hot cream.

chocolate ganache in the food processor:

Drop 8 oz. bittersweet chocolate (the best quality you can afford) into the food processor and run until all pieces are finely chopped. Stop the machine. Pour in 1 c. heavy cream, boiling (I usually nuke it to the boiling point). Let sit for 1 minute. Process until satiny smooth. Add 2 oz. softened unsalted butter. Pulse until butter is incorporated.

Pour into tart crust, chill for 1 hour. Serve at room temperature!