Rich Chocolate Torte //

If there’s one thing you’ve probably noticed about my blog at this point, it’s that I’m rather partial to chocolate. Really. I love it. I think I might be 80% cocoa solids myself I eat it so much. God I want some chocolate… anyway. This delightful torte is from Will Torrent’s lovely book, ‘Patisserie At Home’ which I bought a few months ago…

I’ve not yet tackled some of the more complex recipes but this one is delightfully simple, and bound to impress anyone you present it to. Please bear in mind that this recipe requires a reasonable amount of chilling, so I’d recommend making it the day before it’s required.
Pâte sablée (Sweet Pastry)
200g butter
100g icing sugar, sieved
pinch of salt
1 vanilla bean/vanilla bean paste
2 eggs, lightly beaten

250g plain flour, sieved

Ganache Filling:
150ml whipping cream
2 tablespoons of  butter
pinch of salt
100g milk chocolate, chopped
175g dark chocolate, chopped

1. Beat the butter, sugar and salt together until pale and well combined. Split the vanilla bean lengthways and scrape out the seeds, or if you have paste, put in about 1/2 teaspoon of paste into the mix and combine.

2. Whilst mixing, add the eggs one at a time until combined. Gently mix the flour in, but do not overwork or the dough will become tough. Stop once combined.

3. Bring together as a ball, wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, overnight if possible.

4. Once well chilled, remove from fridge and roll out to the size of your tart tin (approx 24cm wide is ideal). Loosely wrap around the rolling pin and drape over the tin, then gently press into the folds until all covered. Trim off any edges, leaving an overhang, as the pastry will shrink slightly in the oven.

5. Heat oven to 180c/Gas Mark 4. Line the bottom of the pastry case with baking paper, and fill with baking beans. Bake blind for 15-20 minutes. Lower the temperature to 160c/Gas Mark 3. Remove the baking beans and paper, and return to the oven for another 5 – 10 minutes, til the pastry starts turning golden. Then remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.

6. Whilst your pie crust is cooling, melt the cream, butter and salt together in a pan. Once at boiling point, turn off the heat and add the chocolate. Using a spatula, stir in continuous motion in small circles until the chocolate has started to melt, then in larger circles until all the chocolate and melted. This mixture is called ganache, and it’s delicious!
7. Pour your ganache into the tart case straight away, smooth over the top chill for several hours, until set. Once set, scatter with chocolate curls (I used a potato peeler on a bar of milk chocolate) and serve! .

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