John Whaite’s Chocolate & Pear Long Tart
By ‘long tart’ I mean, of course, a tart baked in a tarte maison tin. But as a working-class lad from a family of’mick’ takers, I daren’t call this a tarte maison for fear of my life. Chocolate and pears is a combination that speaks for itself: the after-dinner treat made by Granny, or the only thing on the school dinner menu worth looking forward to. Whatever your happy memories of chocolate and pear, I hope this creates even more.
For the tart:
- 1 quantity Shortcrust Pastry, chilled for 30 minutes
- 415g tin pear halves
- Icing sugar, to sprinkle
For the frangipane:
- 115g salted butter,
- at room temperature
- 115g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 90g ground almonds
- 25g cocoa powder
- 35x12cm/14×5-inch tarte maison tin, preferably with a loose base, or a 23Ã¢â‚¬â€œ25cm/9Ã¢â‚¬â€œ10-inch round, loose-bottomed flan tin
- Baking paper and beans/rice
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Roll out the pastry and use to line the tart tin, pressing well into the grooves and leaving a flap of pastry over the edge, which can be trimmed off later. Prick the base all over with a fork and place in the freezer for 15 minutes.
2. Line the pastry with a sheet of baking paper, and fill with baking beans or rice. Blind-bake with the beans for 15 minutes, then remove the beans and paper, and bake for a further 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool, and reduce the oven temperature to 180°C/Gas 4.
3. While the pastry case is baking, make the chocolate frangipane by beating together the butter and sugar until paler in colour and lighter in texture, then add the eggs and mix in. Add the ground almonds and cocoa powder and fold into a thick batter.
4. Pipe or spoon the frangipane into the tart case, leaving a good centimetre of pastry at the top. Top with the pear halves in a line down the length of the tart. If using a round tart tin, simply place the pears around the edges, or however you like. Sprinkle the pears with a little icing sugar, and bake for 25Ã¢â‚¬â€œ35 minutes, or until the frangipane has puffed up around the pears. Sprinkle with a little more icing sugar to serve.
Eric Lanlard’s Double-baked Chocolate Meringue Brownie
For the brownie:
- 250g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
- 350g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
- 300g light muscovado sugar
- 5 large eggs, separated
For the chocolate meringue:
- 4 egg whites
- 225g golden caster sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cornflour
- 50g pure cocoa powder
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan 160°C)/350°F/ gas mark 4. Grease a 22cm/8½in springform cake tin and line with baking paper, making sure it is at least 5cm/2in above the rim of the tin.
2. To make the brownie, melt the butter and chocolate together in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, making sure the surface of the water does not touch the bowl. Add the sugar, stirring until it has completely dissolved. Remove from the heat and add the egg yolks.
3. In a clean, dry bowl, whisk the egg whites to soft peaks. Fold a couple of tablespoons of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then fold in the remaining whites using a rubber spatula. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for 40 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, make the meringue. In a large, clean, dry bowl, whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks, adding the sugar a little at a time, then add the vanilla extract. Sift the cornflour and cocoa powder together, then fold into the meringue until the mixture is even and glossy.
5. Remove the chocolate brownie from the oven and cover the top with the meringue. Return to the oven for a further 25 minutes, or until the meringue puffs up and a crust forms on the top but the centre is still soft. Leave to cool in the tin. The centre will collapse slightly. Serve warm with crÃƒÂ¨me fraÃƒÂ®che or vanilla ice cream.
- Eric Lanlard and John Whaite will be appearing at Salon Du Chocolat London, 18-20th October. For tickets and more information, visit salonduchocolat.co.uk.
- Eric Lanlard’s ‘Chocolat’ is published by Mitchell Beazley. Recipe photo © Kate Whitaker.
- ‘John Whaite Bakes: Recipes for Everyday and Every Mood’ s published by Headline. Recipe photo © Matt Russell.
- John is now teaching baking classes in Greenwich, London. Details can be found at www.johnwhaite.com.