Phew! It’s full-on summer here in New Zealand and the first day of January 2016 has thrown us a real hot one. Time for a lunch-time barbeque.
I intended to make a pavlova (the quintessential Kiwi barbie dessert) to round off the meal, but the humidity put paid to that. So, I grabbed some cooking magazines and searched for an alternative. In the end, this Chocolate Frangipane Tart with mascarpone cream and fresh berries called my name.
Thanks to New Zealand’s Dish magazine (Issue 63; December 2015/January 2016) for the recipe. I loved the fact that it was not only gluten-free, but quick and easy to make – thankfully no slaving in the kitchen on a hot, muggy day.
I was stoked with the result – it baked up pretty much like a brownie with a crisp exterior and deep, dark, fudgy chocolate centre. The almonds gave it a really nice nutty texture and the mascarpone cream topping and fresh berries cut through the sweetness perfectly.
If you’re looking for a summer dessert that looks great, tastes great, and is ridiculously quick and easy to make, you need look no further. Enjoy!
- 110g (3.8 oz) butter
- 100g (3.5 oz) dark chocolate, chopped
- 2 tablespoons golden syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 120g (4.2 oz) ground almonds (almond meal)
- 1/4 cup caster sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 2 tablespoons cocoa
- 100g (3.5 oz) mascarpone
- 1/2 cup cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
- 1 punnet fresh berries (I used strawberries & blueberries)
- Edible flowers (optional)
- Icing sugar (confectioner's sugar), to dust
- Preheat the oven to 160C (320F) fan bake or 180C (360F) conventional bake.
- Put the butter, chocolate, golden syrup and vanilla in a large heatproof bowl and set over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring occasionally until melted (don't let the base of the saucepan touch the water). Take off the heat and cool for 10 minutes.
- Lightly whisk the eggs in a small bowl and add to the chocolate mixture, whisking for a minute or so to make a thick, glossy batter.
- Combine the almonds, both the sugars, cardamom and the cocoa in another small bowl, ensuring there are no lumps, Add to the chocolate mixture and stir well to combine. Pour into a greased and lined 20cm (8 inch) loose-based tart tin*, placed on a baking tray.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the tart comes out with a few damp crumbs attached. Cool then remove from the tin.
- Whisk the mascarpone, cream and vanilla paste together until thick (don't overbeat or the mascarpone will split).
- Spread the cream over the tart and top with the berries and a dusting of icing sugar. Top with edible flowers if desired.
The tart can be made 2-3 days ahead. Keep in an airtight container and top with the mascarpone and berries on the day of serving.
Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Sigma 30mm 1.4 DC ‘Art’ lens / Natural lighting