Thursday, May 27, 2010

Chocolate Raspberry Tart with a Gingersnap Crust (AKA delicious and easier than you think)


Mister Man and I do love having fun folks over for meals. He is a stellar cook and together, I think we make a good team. He's on Team Savory and I'm on Team Sweet = Team Full Meal Deal.

We had some fabulous friends over this week (on a school night no less! which just goes to show you how much we love 'em!); Eileen, Allan and Big Snit. Mister Man made his soon-to-be-world-famous braised short ribs. I have to confess that we tucked into those babies so quickly and fervently, we didn't even stop for a photo. I'm a bit embarrassed to actually fess up to that one. He served the short ribs with buttery mashed taters and blanched asparagus. One of our guests brought a lovely crunchy salad, so we were happy campers. It was unbelievably delicious. Here they are now: Mister Man and Allan.

EB and Big Snit.
We were all waaaaay too full after the main course, so we actually took pause, during which time I managed to snap these photos of the dessert I made. And here's the thing about this dessert (aside from the fact that it was delicious - a beautiful combo of tart and sweet) - it's EASY to make! And I'm not even pulling your leg! The recipe comes from my favourite foodie mag: Fine Cooking - the CHOCOLATE ISSUE (I feel like there should be piles of reverb on that)

Here's what you do.

Ingredients

About 40 gingersnap wafers (to yield 1 1/2 cups finely ground)
4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
3 1/2 cups fresh raspberries
4 ounces semisweet chocolate
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
Small pinch salt

Instructions

Position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Smear a 9" fluted tart pan (with a removable bottom) with a bit of vegetable oil. In a food processor, grind those gingersnaps until they're the texture of sand. Transfer to a bowl, add the melted butter, and work it in by stirring the mixture or mushing it together with your hands. Press it into the sides and bottom of the oiled tart pan. Set the pan on a baking sheet and refrigerate for 20 minutes to firm.

Bake the tart crust on the baking sheet until fragrant, about 13 minutes, checking and rotating if needed to make the sure the crust doesn't get too dark. Set on a rack to cool.

[Allow me to pause and show you this photo of a beautiful man holding a beautiful tart]

Meanwhile, pass 1 cup of the berries through a food mill fitted with a fine disk or force them through a fine sieve, mashing with the bottom of a measuring cup, into a medium bowl. You should end up with about 1/2 cups of puree. Set it aside and throw away the contents of the strainer. Put the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat the cream just until boiling. Pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate; whisk to blend. Stir in the raspberry puree and the salt. Pour the mixture into the cooled tart shell. Refrigerate until the ganache is fairly firm, about 1 hour. Arrange the remaining raspberries on top of the ganache. Chill until the ganache is completely firm, about 30 minutes, and serve. You can even make this up to one day ahead.

I'll close by sharing a photo of the beautiful bouquet of my favourite flowers that were brought to me by Allan.

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