(I know, I know--I have the best mother-in-law! Don't be jealous--you don't look good in green.)
The class was taught by Marguerite Henderson, a local chef and cookbook writer. We arrived at her home in the Sugarhouse area about the same time as another group of women, a mother with her 3 daughters-in-law. I see a theme. We all tucked ourselves around a counter in her small and stylish kitchen.
Now, I'm the type of person that thinks highly of herself and her ability to bake. I'm a chemist at the core...I can follow a recipe. So when this was the only class that would work for our schedules, I was a little bummed.
I'm no dummy, I thought. I can follow a cookie recipe. Is this going to be worth it?
I kind of think Mom K was thinking the same thing.
Well, it was worth it because of this recipe we got for a Chocolate Caramel Macadamia Tart. Sounds exotic, doesn't it?
So this last weekend when Lee and I had some friends over, I decided to give it a try. Here are the cast of characters:
Preheat the oven 350 degrees. Marguerite suggested purchasing pie crusts, so I did. My pie crusts still need help. That's another story. I put it into a 9" removable bottom cheesecake pan.
You add the sugars together...
Eggs, flour, salt and vanilla extract.
Mix till frothy.
Coarsely chop those lovely, buttery macadamia nuts.
Add the nuts, chocolate chips, and rum extract. (Okay, we don't just have rum lying around, so we went with some rum extract.). Stir together quickly.
Pour in the pie crust and bake for 50 minutes.
It doesn't look like much, but stay with me, people. Under that uneventful top layer is something that is so worth it!
For the ganache topping, all you need is love. Actually, chocolate and cream, but that's pretty much love right there. It does take a couple minutes--just make sure you keep the heat low! Heck, after it's somewhat warm, you can remove it from the heat and keep stirring.
Now the caramel drizzle took a lot longer...just be patient. Once again, keep the heat medium low. It gets clumpy first, but it will eventually get smoother and caramely-looking.
Then drizzle the ganache and caramel in a criss-cross pattern. Lee was the drizzler. Doesn't it look messy? And pretty?
Rich, decadent, and delicious. A scoop of vanilla ice cream is perfect with a slice of this tart!
Chocolate Caramel Macadamia Tart
1 pie crust (premade or homemade), rolled out to 12"
4 large eggs
1 c. sugar
1 c. light corn syrup
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 c. macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped
1 c. dark chocolate bits
2 tbsp dark rum (or rum extract)
1 c. dark chocolate bits
1/2 c. heavy cream
1 c. sugar
Tart: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the pie crust in a 9" removable bottom tart pan, pressing up the sides. In a bowl, beat the sugar, corn syrup, eggs, salt, flour, and vanilla extract until frothy. Add the nuts, chocolate and rum. Pour into the pie crust and place the tart pan on a baking sheet. Bake for 50 minutes. Remove from oven and cool slightly.
Chocolate Drizzle: Combine chocolate and cream in a small saucepan. Over low heat, stir with a wooden spoon until melted and smooth. With a fork, drizzle the chocolate over the tart in a criss-cross pattern.
Caramel Drizzle: Heat sugar over low medium heat in a small saucepan, stirring with a wooden spoon until sugar melts and turns a caramel hue. With a fork, drizzle the caramel over the tart in a criss-cross pattern. (Note: The caramel turns into a hardened sugar, so I think I'll either leave it out next time or make a gooey-er caramel (with a little cream).)
Chill the tart until ready--remove the outer ring and cut into 8 pieces.