Thursday, February 13, 2014

Chocolate ganache tart with raspberries

I’m not sure how many of you really care about my feelings toward Valentine’s Day so I’m going to spare you the details and just come out and say that I really don’t care about it.

I have nothing against it but I find it’s more important to be aware of your feelings towards the ones you love and share these feelings with them as often as possible, preferably every single day, rather than wait for that one day in the middle of February to do it.

Granted, February is a bleak month and it could benefit from a little love-showing but you will never see me making heart-shaped cookies or cakes for my beloved partner on Valentine’s because I reserve that kind of thing for our anniversary. Ha!

The only thing I can say that I love about Valentine’s is that I have an excuse to eat more chocolate, not that I need one. It’s nice to have a legitimate reason though, right?

I haven’t decided yet on what I’m going to make tomorrow, and let’s not pretend it will be this tart, because we have eaten this already over the last few days. I am a last-minute kind of person on these things and will probably decide tomorrow morning, but you, well you should definitely make this.

This is my idea of a perfect dessert. A chocolate tart with a pâte sucrée base and a chocolate ganache filling.

The tart is not too sweet, with the raspberries adding a pleasant acidity and freshness. The base is biscuit-like and buttery with a subtle vanilla flavor whereas the ganache is silky smooth and supremely chocolatey. It is delightful in every possible way, it looks pretty and it tastes fantastic.

Have fun!

Chocolate Ganache Tart with Raspberries

Pâte sucrée (sweet pastry crust) is a sweet and rich pastry with a crisp, biscuit-like texture. It is made with flour, butter, icing sugar and eggs, and it’s used as the base for sweet tarts whose filling don’t need baking.
I have made another version of pâte sucrée previously for this fresh berry tart that contains three egg yolks rather than two whole eggs and is made and baked in a slightly different way, yet I can’t discriminate between the two. They are both very good. Stick to this one if you’d rather use fewer eggs.

Decorate with some fresh raspberries, or alternatively and if you can't find fresh raspberries, with a sprinkling of icing sugar. Both will look and taste great on top.

Yield: 6-8 pieces


for the pâte sucrée (pastry)
250 g all-purpose flour, sieved
100 g unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces, plus extra for greasing the pan
100 g icing sugar, sieved
Pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla bean paste or the scraped seeds from 1 fresh vanilla bean
2 medium-sized eggs, at room temperature

for the chocolate ganache filling
250 ml cream, full-fat (35%)
200 g good quality dark chocolate (55-60% cocoa solids), cut into small pieces
30 g glucose syrup (or golden syrup or light corn syrup)
60 g unsalted butter, softened and cut into pieces
Pinch of salt

Fresh raspberries, to decorate the tart

Special equipment: fine sieve, large food processor, rolling pin, plastic wrap, fluted or straight tart pan (22 cm in diameter) with removable bottom, baking paper, baking weights or dried beans


for the pâte sucrée
• with a food processor
In a large food processor, add the flour, butter, icing sugar, salt and vanilla bean paste or seeds and process, tilting and gently shaking the bowl until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs or almond meal. Then add the eggs and process until just combined and you have a very soft and pliable dough. It will be a little sticky.

• by hand
In a large bowl, add the flour, icing sugar, salt and vanilla bean paste or seeds and stir with a spatula. Add the cubed cold butter and, using two knives, a pastry cutter/blender or your fingertips, cut it into the flour, until you have a mixture that resembles coarse breadcrumbs or almond meal. Then make a well in the middle, add the eggs and mix with your hands, working quickly, until just combined and you have a very soft and pliable dough. It will be a little sticky.

Empty the pastry dough onto a lightly floured work surface, lightly flour your hands and knead very lightly the dough for 5-10 seconds, just until it comes together into a ball. Place the dough ball in a large piece of plastic wrap, form a disk, cover it and place it in the refrigerator to chill and firm up, for 2 hours.

Lightly grease the bottom and sides of your tart pan.

Remove the pastry dough from the refrigerator, unwrap and discard the plastic wrap and place dough between two large sheets of baking paper. Using a rolling pin, roll out the pastry to a thickness of 0.2-0.3 cm.
Remove the top sheet of baking paper, slide your hand underneath the bottom baking paper and carefully and gently invert the dough onto the tart pan, allowing it to fall little-by-little onto the pan base. Remove the baking paper from the top and carefully and gently again line the pan with the pastry, pushing it into the curved sides of the pan if you’re using a fluted tart pan. If it tears, don’t fret; just use the overhanging dough to cover those tears. Using the back of a knife, cut the excess dough that's hanging around the edges of the pan.
Place the tart pan in the refrigerator and chill the dough for 20-30 minutes.

Note: In case you have left-over dough, you can keep it in the freezer, wrapped in cling film or in a ziploc bag, for up to a month. Thaw it and use it to make smaller tarts or biscuits.

Preheat your oven to 190 degrees Celsius.

Take the tart pan out of the refrigerator and prick the base of the dough with a fork all around. Line the bottom and sides of the dough with a large enough piece of baking paper and fill it with pie weights or dried beans. Place the pan on a baking sheet and on the middle rack of the oven and bake the pastry for 20 minutes.
Take the pan out of the oven and remove the baking paper along with the pie weights. Turn heat down to 180 degrees Celsius, return pastry to the oven and bake for another 5 minutes until the dough has taken on a slightly golden color. Be careful not to over-bake otherwise the pastry will be too hard.

Remove tart pan from the oven, place onto a wire rack to cool completely and then remove the pastry from the pan.

for the chocolate ganache filling
Once the tart base has cooled, start making the ganache.
In a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan, add the cream and bring to the boil over medium heat. Remove pan from the heat and add the chopped chocolate and glucose syrup. Leave for 1 minute and then whisk until you have a smooth and creamy mixture. Immediately add butter, one small piece at a time, whisking continuously yet softly until all the butter has been incorporated into the mixture and you have a smooth and creamy ganache.

Note: Don’t whisk vigorously because air will be incorporated in the ganache resulting in little bubbles that will be visible on top. I didn’t follow my own advice and whisked a little harder than I should, that’s why tiny bubbles are visible on top of the tart.

Assemble the tart
Place tart shell on a plate.
While the ganache is still warm, pour it into the tart shell, all the way to the top but being careful not to spill it. If you have any leftover ganache, pour it into a glass bowl and place it in the fridge to eat as some sort of chocolate pudding.
Place the tart carefully in the fridge and allow the ganache to set completely before serving. It will take 3-4 hours for the ganache to set.

Once ready, decorate the tart with some raspberries and have some extra to serve alongside the tart, or alternatively you can sprinkle the top with icing sugar.

You can keep the tart in the refrigerator, uncovered (or lightly covered with a piece of plastic wrap) for 2 days.


  1. Ziet er heerlijk uit! I agree with you about Valentine's Day. Fixing a fancy desert is nice, but it's always nice, Especially if you live in a place where you can find all the ingredients. I remember a time when I lived in a poor country in Africa and learned how to make whipped cream from imported, frozen Danish butter. Can't now remember how I did it ;)

    As always, I love your pictures.

  2. Oh, Magda...that looks so beautiful and delicious ...even the very few bubbles!

    I am not a Valentines Day fan either...silly. Absolutely agree that we should express love for our loved ones every day of the year!

  3. Yum; I second all the above discourse about the artificial Valentine's Day, yet one more marketing gimmick to drum up sales (but OK, whatever) ; how about a chocolate day? and the best way to eat it is with a ganache tart like this one, in my humbe opinion.

  4. Valentine's Day happens also to be the day I met Mark, so we definitely celebrate that! Plus, it is a date he can remember... :) I would never make him this for Valentine's Day/Anniversary because he doesn't like chocolate. (Personally, I think it is denial...) But I will make it for me and he will just have to grin and bear it. Have a great day! xo, David

  5. Miss Footloose — wow, what an experience that must have been! It is indeed very easy for us living in countries where everything is available to us. Sometimes we take that for granted. Thank you!

    Liz — oh the bubbles! I didn't notice them at first, I was too busy eating the tart, but looking at the photos I realized I had overwhisked the ganache resulting in the tiny bubbles. Tha flavor was still amazing!

    Joumana — chocolate day! Yay! I'm all for that! I agree, this is the best way to eat it; ganache heaven!

    David — I can't believe Mark doesn't like chocolate!! You can make this for you, you deserve it! have a wonderful day!

  6. Beautiful photos! This looks like an easy but impressive dessert to have on standby. Perfect for V day of course, but great for any dinner party! I'm in Greece too by the way. Great to find you!

  7. I definitely don't need the excuse of Valentine's Day to eat something so delicious looking!

  8. I’ve been waiting for this moment since Monday and here it is!!! I’ve baked it and it’s unearthly delicious: so creamy, so smooth and so chocolate! Magda, of course, it’s not that beautiful as yours, but in the end it is taste that really matters (okay, I’m trying to find excuses for myself, lol).

    Also, next time I’ll add a little more butter so that the ganache would be firmer.

    Thank you for the recipe!