Sometimes you need a luxurious dessert and when that need comes a chocolate, hazelnut and salted caramel tart is the answer.
Can I be honest? This tart was a bit of a pain to make. Or if I’m being actually honest, I just kept messing up and making stupid mistakes. My pastry was impossible to work with and ended up being like a patchwork quilt in the tin. I took my caramel off the hob too early so it didn’t develop the gorgeous amber colour it should. And my ganache split. Like legit turned into an oily goopy mess.
But I managed to make it through, and produce something that I actually really loved!
I mean the combination of chocolate and salted caramel was never gonna be too bad right?
Chocolate pastry isn’t something I work with too often, so for me some practise is definitely in order. Due to the high fat content in the pastry it is trickier to work with, but if you roll out the pastry between two pieces of baking paper you should be okay! The recipe is a variation on my usual sweet shortcrust and is perfectly buttery and crumbly. Your pastry chilling time is the longest part of the recipe too, as the caramel and ganache are super quick!
Now a chocolate, hazelnut and caramel tart is good. But a chocolate, hazelnut and salted caramel tart? Now thats a winner.
The salted caramel is my go-to recipe. Its foolproof – well, unless you take it off the hob too soon! Doh! Golden syrup, sugar, water, cream and butter is all you need to get a gorgeously rich caramel. With the vanilla and flaked sea salt giving it that winning edge. I find my caramel needs about 10 minutes to get to the perfect consistency and colour, but make sure you watch it! I managed to unstack the dishwasher and half re-fill it in the time, but make sure you swirl the pan every now and then too. No stirring! Just swirling 🙂
The final element to the tart is the ganache. Ganache is a simple thing, but when it goes wrong it can look horrendous. If you’ve split ganache before you’ll know what I mean, but the oily/watery ness just looks so grim. It looks bitty too, and if you touch it doesn’t stick to you like chocolate normally would.
To avoid this, don’t overheat your cream!! But if you do overheat it like I did – too busy finishing stacking the dishwasher!! Its not the end. Get out your hand whisk and give it a good beat to try and emulsify the ganache. Or like I did, warm some milk slightly and whisk a little in. Soon you’ll have a smooth and shiny ganache again.
I must add just a little mention to the hazelnuts, which sit between the caramel and ganache! They provide a really welcome texture crunch, and hazelnuts go so well with caramel that it really was a match made in heaven!
I hope you enjoy the chocolate, hazelnut and salted caramel tart and it gives you less stress than it did me! All my taste-testers enjoyed it very much. Even my Dad, who isn’t usually a sweet-tooth! Perhaps its the bitter dark chocolate that helped, or he was just being kind…!