The theme for HHDD#15 organised by TriniGourmet is tarts. While I have a serious aversion for working with pastry, I was going to try and overcome this. I was all prepared to try and fail, learn from my mistakes, start with frozen pastry and move on to become brave enough to make it from scratch. You get the picture...
So I went in search of recipes. I started with Donna Hay's latest book Simple Essentials: Chocolate, the same one that I sent Peabody as thanks for her Snickerdoodle recipe. There were two tart recipes and both didn't require pastry! Yay! So much for trying to conquer my fear...
I chose this one because it was for 6 individual small portions. However, I couldn't find the little tart tins with removable bases. I had to make a large one instead. The original recipe was for raspberries but I much prefer cherries so here it is.
Chocolate Cherry Macaroon Tart
Macaroon Shell (makes 6 3-inch tart shells or 2 8-inch tart shells)
3 egg whites
3/4 cup sugar
3 cups or 200g desiccated coconut
Cherry Chocolate Filling (fills 6 3-inch tart shells or 1 8-inch tart shell)
4 oz or 125g dark chocolate, chopped (I used one with 65% cocoa)
1/2 cup cream
2 tbs sugar
2 tbs flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
7 oz or 200g cherries, fresh or frozen
Preheat oven at 280F. Combine the ingredients for the tart shell, divide it between the tart tins and press firmly over base and sides.
Bake for 25-30 minutes until the macaroon shells are firm and browned then remove from oven.
Increase oven temperature to 320F. To make the filling, put the cream and chocolate in a saucepan over low heat and stir until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and sugar to combine well. Sift in the flour and baking powder, stir in the chocolate mixture. Spoon into the macaroon shells and top with the cherries (if using frozen cherries, no need to defrost).
Bake for 25-35 minutes until the filling is just firm. Cool in the tins before removing to serve.
Verdict: The chocolate filling is rich but the cherries go very well with it. The macaroon shells add an interesting texture and overall, its a great tart - easy to make and everyone loved it! This is better eaten on the day it is made. If refrigerated overnight, warm in the oven before serving.