The holiday season is here, this elegant Chocolate-Orange Tart is rich and scrumptious that is fitting for any dinner party! Don’t worry. It’s not too complicated, but guarantee that everyone will be impressed.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! We’re getting rain in Los Angeles today and probably some more next week. That’s the typical winter weather for us. I’m really looking forward to that slightly chilly weather, so I can finally put on that new sweater. The holidays are here, which also means it’s time for holiday desserts.
Today’s dessert will be excellent on the holiday table. It’s elegant and rich, but doesn’t require too many ingredients and too much works. There’re two components in this recipe. First, the tart crust. It’s a very simple French sweet dough. It’s mostly flour, sugar and butter, then there are salt, egg, vanilla and milk. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then work in the butter. I used my finger tips, but you can also use a pastry cutter. The goal is to make the butter into small pieces and kind of combine with the dry ingredients. It should look like coarse breadcrumbs. Next, stir in the wet ingredients. The dough is crumbly at this point. Gather the dough together and knead gently for a few times. Pat into a round disk and chill in the fridge. During the whole process, make sure the butter is still cold and not melted. If the butter is getting a bit warm, transfer to the fridge for 10 minutes before continuing.
Once dough is chilled, roll out the dough, make sure to dust the surface with a little bit of flour. Lift the dough every once a while and dust the surface with more flour. Sticky dough isn’t fun. Carefully roll the dough onto the rolling pin and transfer to the tart pan. Press and fit the dough into the pan. Prick the bottom crust all over with a fork. That will prevent puffing during baking. Chill the dough once more. Right before baking, crunch up a piece of parchment paper. Open it back up and place over the tart crust. Try to fit the paper nicely on the tart crust, so no gap in between. If needed, fold the paper a little. Then add pie weights or dried beans. That way the weights can press against the sides of the tart, so no puffing and shrinking. Bake in the oven for about 12 minutes. The crust should feels dry and set. Remove the pie weights and paper carefully. Return the crust to oven and bake until golden brown. Cool on a cooling rack until completely cool.
Now, for the filling, it’s basically a chocolate ganache with orange zest. The chocolate and orange combination is one of my favorites. I like the citrusy orange cuts the rich chocolate a bit and gives that little extra flavor. I used a semisweet chocolate with 62% cacao. Use anything around 60% is good. It’s not too dark or sweet. Chop the chocolate into small pieces and pour hot cream over. Let the hot cream do all the work. You just have to wait for 5 minutes. Then add fresh orange zest and softened butter. Stir everything together until smooth. That’s it. Pour into the cooled tart crust. Use a toothpick to remove any air bubbles. Chill in the fridge until set.
If you’re planning to make this for a dinner party, I recommend making the tart crust the day before. Then fill the ganache the day of the party. Even though the finished tart can last for at least a day in the fridge, the ganache can sometimes crack overnight. To ensure the tart looks perfect, fill on the same day. Garnish just right before serving.
This tart is rich and chocolatey with a mild orange taste and occasional saltiness from the salt and sweetness from the crust. When I first had this dessert, it reminded me of Jacob’s Orange Club. Absolutely love it! This is a really satisfying dessert to finish a meal. Hope you guys will like this! I can’t wait to take it to a holiday party!
- Flaky sea salt
- Chocolate shaving (optional for garnish)
- Dehydrated or fresh orange slices (optional for garnish)
- 150 grams all-purpose flour
- 50 grams sugar
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 113 grams unsalted butter (8 tablespoons) (cold and cut into ½-inch cubes)
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
- 283 grams semi-sweet chocolate (10 ounces) (chopped into small pieces)
- 1½ cups heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon orange zest (about 1 orange) (finely grated)
- 70 grams unsalted butter (5 tablespoons) (at room temperature and cut into ½-inch cubes)
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and salt. Add cold butter cubes. Toss with flour mixture. Using your finger tips or a pastry cutter, break the butter into small pieces, no larger than the size of pea. The mixture should look like coarse breadcrumbs. Transfer the bowl in the fridge to chill.
- In the meantime, in a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk, vanilla extract and milk.
- Add the wet mixture into the flour mixture. The mixture will be crumbly. Using your hand, squeeze the dough together and knead gently for a couple times. Shape into a round disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round tart pan (with a removable bottom) with butter.
- In a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into about 1/8-inch thick. While working, dust with more flour to prevent sticking. Carefully roll the dough onto a rolling pin and transfer to the prepared tart pan. Press and fit the dough into the pan. Trim off any excess dough. If there is any crack or hole, patch with a thin layer of extra dough. Prick the dough all over with a fork (just the bottom, not the sides). Chill the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375˚F (190˚C). Prepare a 12 x 12 parchment paper, crunch it up roughly and open it back up, so it can be easily shaped into the tart.
- Place and fit the parchment paper on the tart. Fill with pie weights or dry beans. Bake in the oven for 12 – 14 minutes, until the crust feels dry and set. Carefully remove the pie weights and parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 8 – 10 more minutes, until golden brown.
- Remove the crust from oven and cool completely on a cooling rack (keep the tart in the pan).
- For the ganache, in a large mixing bowl, place chopped chocolate.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine heavy cream and sugar. Cook until it just starts to simmer. Pour over the chocolate immediately. Set aside for 5 minutes. Add orange zest and softened butter cubes. Stir with a spatula until smooth and glossy. Pour the ganache into the cooled tart crust (still in tart pan). Remove the air bubbles with a toothpick. Carefully transfer the tart to the fridge to set for at least 1 hour.
- When ready to serve, carefully remove tart from pan. Sprinkle the top with flaky sea salt. Garnish with chocolate shaving and orange slices if using. Cut the tart with a hot knife. Serve cold.
- Tart crust can be made a day ahead. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and keep at room temperature.
- Semisweet chocolate is about 60% cocoa content. I used one with 62%. Use chocolate bars, but not baking bars (no sugar) or chocolate chips (don’t melt too well).
- Decorate the tart anything you want, like edible flowers, berries, and whipped cream.
- The whole tart can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and keep in the fridge. Sprinkle with salt and decorate right before serving. But if you want to make sure your tart looks perfect. I recommend filling the tart on the day of serving. That will reduce the risk of cracks in the ganache.
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