I’m a sucker for all things seasonal–strawberries top my list because they come for only a while, and I love them. In season, there is no point in time that my fridge will not see them. I start getting uneasy when there are just a couple left, and then I have to go out and get several more boxes.
I returned home yesterday after over a week to a near-empty fridge, and promptly ordered some strawberries. You know, just to ensure the house doesn’t suffer from lack of staples. Then, I discovered a bit of leftover shortcrust pastry dough lying in a bag, waiting to be picked. I had only recently re-shared this recipe for a quick chocolate and strawberry tart so the combination of strawberry and chocolate was fresh in my mind. It had to happen. I was going to write about how I used milk instead of cream and didn’t add any sugar when I realized how much butter there is the crust. All my dreams of finally writing a healthy dessert recipe just went out the window. But then, it is a dessert–what else is it going to be, if not decadent?
Chocolate and Strawberry Tart Recipe
- 100 gms. flour
- 50 gms. + 1 tsp. butter, chilled and cubed
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 7-8 strawberries, sliced
- 1 cup whole fat milk
- 1 tsp. cornstarch/custard powder
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate, chopped
- 1 tbsp. icing sugar
- Spring of mint to decorate
|A perfect shortcrust pastry will shrink a bit from the sides of the tin. Eureka!|
- To make the pastry, place the flour, chilled butter, and a pinch of salt in a food processor with the chopping blade on.
- Pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Gradually add half the beaten egg and continue to process until the mixture just comes together. Add more egg, if necessary. (If you’re making the pastry by hand, use a fork or a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour and bind the dough with some beaten egg.)
- Wrap the pastry dough into a sheet of cling wrap or in a freezer-proof bag, and refrigerate for about half an hour.
- Remove and roll out the pastry between sheets of cling wrap to about ¼ inch in thickness.
- Carefully transfer the rolled out dough to a tart tin and press to line. Trim the excess dough.
- Prick the pastry with a fork, and fill with half a cup of dried beans. Bake blind, at 180 degrees centigrade, for about 15 minutes until the pastry appears firm to touch. Remove the beans, and bake for another five minutes. Remove and cool completely.
- Meanwhile, make the chocolate custard–heat the milk in a saucepan and add the chopped chocolate.
- Whisking continuously, add the cornstarch/custard powder and cook for a minute until thick but of pouring consistency.
- Pour into the cooled tart shell and chill to set.
- Decorate with sliced strawberries, sprinkle with a little icing sugar, and bejewel with a sprig of mint, fresh from your window garden.