Chocolate Tartlets (Tortino al Cioccolato)
I love individual Tarts, don't you? How does one travel through Italy without ever having some of the best chocolate in the world? On my last trip, I tasted chocolate from Bari to Bologna. After a stop in the city of Perugia, I was convinced. (http://inperugia.com/eurochocolate-chocolate-festival)
Italian desserts are something to behold, having learned a lot from their European friends, the Austrians. http://www.saveur.com/article/Travels/Viennas-Sweet-Empire Delicate, luscious desserts made up of very few ingredients, including the highest quality Cocoa (above 75 percent). Makes all the difference in the world. This Tortina di Cioccolato, was originally served as a cake, by the slice. I love the idea of little tartlets. I hate to share. Don't you?
It was my idea to top it off with Vanilla ice cream and Carmel. The Italians nor any European Pastry shop, wouldn't hear of it. Why cover up a good thing? I am Italian-American after all. BuonAppetito!
Ingredients: Makes 4 servings.
6 ounces of butter cut up/cold/ cubed (extra butter for lining ramekins)
4 / 6 ounce Ramekins, lined with butter and sprinkled with some extra sugar on hand.
4 eggs ( 2 eggs/ 2 egg yolks)
1/3 cup unbleached flour or 1/ 2 cup gluten free or almond flour (Recipe works will gluten free)
1/3 cup granulated sugar plus extra for lining the ramekins
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate
4 ounces Dark chocolate
2 pinches of course sea salt
Optional 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Melt your chocolate an butter together to melt. You can use the water method or your microwave. If you are using your microwave, melt at 20 second intervals. Do not try to melt butter all at once. If you chocolate has a high percentage of Cocoa, it might take a shorter time to melt. Keep this in mind. I would hate for you to have to start over.
Preheat your oven to 350F degrees. Prepare a pan of hot water and set it in your bottom rack of your oven. Bring the oven temperature back to 350F. Prepare your Ramekins by buttering and shaking some sugar around the inside. These will look glossy when turned over and come out easily.
After it's melted let cool and mix until thoroughly combined.
In a mixer on low or by hand, combine the rest of your ingredients. Carefully add your cooled chocolate.
After it's combined, carefully pour the chocolate into your Ramekins about 3/4 of the way or so. Carefully place them into the center rack of the oven for about 22-25 minutes, until done. Do not open the oven. Do not over bake. They need to be light and airy and jiggle some. They will continue to cook while they cool.
They need to look like this:
A scoop of good quality Gelato or Ice cream and some Caramel Sauce, what more can this Italian girl ask for?
Well, maybe eating it in Italy.
Can't miss Caramel Sauce
One cup of sugar
6 tablespoons of cubed, unsalted butter
1/2 cup of whipping cream or milk.
pinch of salt
one teaspoon of Vanilla extract ( optional)
1.Melted on low/medium on the stove. Be sure and use an heat proof spoon or spatula to move the sugar around the pan.
2. After your sugar has dissolved, , Remove from heat. It should be an amber color. Working quickly, Add a pinch of salt
3. Add butter and stir, your mixture will bubble up
4. add your whipping cream and stir until your mixture is opaque, thickened and shiny.
Pour into a container and let cool. Can be stored for up to 2 weeks refrigerated.
Serve your chocolate cakes, turned over onto a plate or right in the ramekins. Spoon some ice cream or gelato over the top and cover in Caramel sauce. Enjoy!