Guys, this was absolutely gorgeous!! A "buttery" shortbread cookie crust lined with chocolate, filled with a punchy orange almond filling and drizzled with a beautiful dark chocolate ganache. Phew! This would make an ideal treat for Mother's Day coming up this Sunday here in Ireland and the UK. In fact my own mother-in-law loved this so much she booked one for an upcoming do she is hosting (and no one there will be vegan!)
I was inspired by several recipes here, initially I have based this on BBC Good Food's Orange Chocolate Tart - I loved the idea of lining the pastry base with a brushing of melted chocolate and letting it set. A great idea to stop your filling making the base soggy AND adding some wonderful flavour to boot!
Their filling was filled with eggs and cream and all that so instead I based the filling on my own recipe, the Summer Berry Almond Cheesecake Tart - which in turn is actually based on the Almond Feta recipe!! See how versatile that thing is?? Thankfully, it turned out perfect, just the right amount of filling for the pan, great texture and spot on orange flavour. It's the easiest filling in the world to make as well, simply throw it all in a blender and blitz, pour it in the prepared case and bake. Simple.
The Good Food recipe base was a type of pastry and I debated for awhile what I was going to do but opted in the end to make a shortbread cookie base. I veganized the Joy of Baking's recipe for this and it turned out wonderfully! Light and a little flaky but holds together perfectly and a great buttery flavour which goes perfect with the filling and chocolate. Much better than using pastry. I also used her tip for freezing the base before baking which cuts out the awkward step of blind baking - brilliant.
Lastly, I wanted to drizzle the top of this tart with dark chocolate, something the recipe I based this on didn't do. I was going to just melt chocolate and drizzle it on but then you do end up with hard chocolate on top which shatters upon slicing which I wanted to avoid. So I went with a ganache style chocolate sauce instead. For this I also used a recipe on BBC Good Food from another Chocolate Orange Tart recipe they have. It's simply 70% dark chocolate, cream (I used soy) and golden syrup. This was amazing!! Great flavour and perfect consistency. It makes extra as well so it's nice to serve the tart with more of the sauce on the side if people would like more. It is rich however and really you don't need much of it.
Altogether this is a wonderful dessert, perfect for guests vegan and non-vegan alike (which I can confirm!). Hope you like it as much as we all did....♥
Dark Chocolate Orange Tart
Yields one 8 - 9 inch (20 - 23 cm) Tart (or about 12 slices depending on how big a slice you like!)
1 cup (130 grams) flour
1/3 cup (35 grams) icing sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (113 grams) vegan butter
For the Filling:
2¼ cups / 225g ground almonds (almond meal)
75g vegan butter, melted (1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp)
1/8 tsp salt
½ tsp orange extract
Zest of 1 navel orange – ½ Tbsp
200ml strained freshly squeezed orange juice
3/4 cup/150g golden caster sugar
100g dark chocolate, chopped (I used 51% cocoa solids here)
For the Dark Chocolate Ganache Drizzle:
85g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
100ml soy cream
2 Tbsp golden syrup
First, you will need to freeze the vegan butter into little blobs. This will help make it firmer, more like real butter and help the texture. Measure out the butter then drop teaspoonfuls onto a sheet of baking or parchment paper on top of a chopping board or plate. Place this in the freezer for about an hour. They don't have to be completely frozen, just firmer and nice and chilled.
Tip the butter into a food processor with all the other ingredients and process until it looks crumbly and is just starting to come together.
Lightly spray a non-stick 8 - 9 inch (20 - 23 cm) tart pan with a removable bottom. Tip the crumbly dough into the tart pan and using a piece of cling film around your hand press the dough into the pan and up the sides. This is fiddly and will take awhile, be patient! My pan is the larger 9" and there were times I thought this wasn't going to be enough dough but it is, the amount was perfect in the end. Just keep going and try and make it as even as possible.
Prick the base of the tart with a fork, this will stop it bubbling when you bake it.
Cover the tart with cling film and freeze for 15 minutes. As Stephanie says in Joy of Baking this will help stop the crust from shrinking when you bake it and cuts out having to blind bake the crust (and it works!)
Preheat the oven to 200C / 400F. Place the tart on a baking sheet and place in the middle of the oven. Bake for 15 minutes or until it is just lightly golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Once the base is fully cool melt the chocolate, either in the microwave or in a bowl set over a pot of simmering water and brush the chocolate liberally all over the base of the tart. You won't need all the chocolate.
When the chocolate is set, preheat the oven to 180C / 350F and make the filling. As mentioned you simply place everything into a blender and process until smooth and creamy. As usual my Froothie Optimum 9400 high performance blender did an incredible job here, super creamy in no time! (Not like my last blender where I had to keep shaking it back and forth like a maniac and stopping every 2 seconds to scrape down - so frustrating!)
Take the chocolate lined tart from the fridge and pour the filling in, make sure you scoop out all you can and then level off the top.
Pop it in the preheated oven and bake for about 30 minutes. This will vary depending on your oven but it should be firm to the touch and lightly golden brown with no wobble.
Leave this on a wire rack to fully cool then cover and place in the fridge.
To make the chocolate ganache drizzle, place the chopped chocolate, soy cream and golden syrup in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Stir constantly until the chocolate just melts and it is thick and glossy. Remove the bowl from the pan and let it cool slightly. It's ok if it's still a little warm but you don't want it hot.
I found the mixture a little thick to drizzle with a spoon or fork so I placed some of the ganache into a ziplock bag, snipped off a little corner and piped the drizzle on back and forth. Now remove the side of the tart pan and place the tart on a cake stand....
....then slice and serve!
Note: tart is best stored in the fridge.
Disclaimer: this post contains affiliated links to Froothie UK, I receive a little commission for any blender purchased through my blog which in turn helps fund my website. Thanks!
Nutritional Information: based on 1/12th of the tart (excluding any extra ganache you may use!) ;-)
Sat Fat: 4.2g
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Sat Fat: 4.2g
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(4th of July version)