Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Chocolate Ganache Tart with Lemon

Is there someone in your life that you love?

Not just someone you love, but someone you Loooooove. You know, the ooey, gooey, dopey kind of love? The kind Jen has with Barry and the kind I plan to have someday with my own version of Prince Charming. I ask, because this isn't a dessert you would make for just anybody that you love- it's gotta be dopey love.

I say this because although it's not a difficult recipe, the process has several steps - steps that you take and then you wait. Take another step, then wait. Another step, wait again.

And since waiting is not something I do well, I found myself muttering the words, "This better be worth it" somewhere around step number three.

I love oil paintings! I don't do oil paintings because it involves painting a little and waiting alot. Painting a little, waiting alot. I like to paint with acrylics because I can work and work and work and finish in the same day. Of course acrylic is no match for oil when it comes to breathtaking art, but I can't make myself endure the process, so I only paint mediocre acrylics.

This dessert is my oil painting. It was easy to make and it did not take as much time as I complain about, but I myself, would most likely reserve this chocolate delicacy for a man I felt the dopey kind of love for.

Wouldn't it be ironic if my prince didn't like chocolate? It's possible I would never make this recipe again. Actually, that's not possible because my version of Prince Charming loves chocolate almost as much as I do. Actually, he's probably in a little chocolatier shop in Italy right now, buying chocolate for me, only he doesn't know it's for me....yet!


Not long ago, on a beautiful spring day I was perusing a cookbook that was all about lemons - because I AM a lemon junkie - and I discovered about 20 new desserts that I would have to try before I died and they all starred the almighty lemon. But this particular recipe was special, because it intertwined lemon with my other great love - chocolate!

This little tart, it turns out, is well worth the time and patience required to create it. It's flavor is simply exquisite and I hope to make it again real soon....if you know what I mean.

Chocolate Ganache Tart with Lemon

3 Large Egg Yolks
1/2 Teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
1/2 Cup Confectioners' Sugar
2 Tablespoons Whole Unblanched Almonds
3/4 Cup All-Purpose Flour
Pinch of Salt
5 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter (room temperature)
One Cup Heavy Whipping Cream
2 Tablespoons Finely Grated lemon Zest
8 Ounces Semisweet Chocolate, chopped
2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice

Stir together one egg yolk and the vanilla in a small bowl. Process the sugar and almonds in a food processor until the almonds are finely ground. Add the flour and salt and process just until blended. Add the butter and pulse just until the mixture begins to come together when a small bit is pressed between your fingers. Do not overprocess; the mixture should not form a ball. Shape the dough into a disk, wrap in waxed paper, and refrigerate for at least one hour or up to 2 days.


Butter the bottom and side of a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface to an 11-inch circle. Transfer to the prepared pan and press in the dough with your fingertips to evenly line the side and bottom of the pan. Trim the edge. Prick the dough all over with a fork. Refrigerate for at least one hour.


At least 25 minutes before baking, position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Bake the pastry shell for15 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack.


Bring the cream and the zest to a boil over medium heat in a medium saucepan. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand, covered, for ten minutes.

Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a double boiler, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat.

Whisk the remaining 2 egg yolks in a medium bowl. Add 1/2 cup of the cream mixture to the yolks, whisking constantly until combined well. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the custard thickens and leaves a path on the back of a wooden spoon when a finger is drawn across it; do not allow the mixture to boil.

Whisk the cream mixture and the lemon juice into the chocolate. Pour the mixture through a strainer into a 4-cup glass measure and whisk until completely smooth. Cool the chocolate mixture to room temperature.


Pour the chocolate mixture into the pastry shell and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight, until set and thoroughly chilled.


Let the tart stand at room temperature for 30 minutes - WAITING AGAIN! - before cutting into thin wedges and serving. Sift a light layer of cocoa powder on top if desired.

After serving this delicious tart to your dopey love, prepare yourself to receive a big ol' sloppy kiss, because that AND MORE is sure to be in your very near future!


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