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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Chocolate Pecan Tart

Really quick I’ll just tell you that I’m sorry I kind of dropped off the face of the earth the last month. I’ve been really sick. Really, really sick. 
On to better things…Join me.
So I’ve become sort of obsessed with this European magazine called Easy Bakes. I’m also now in love with the European section at Wegman’s (which I used to pass by without hesitation. Mostly because I was really confused by what a lot of it was for).Do you know what castor sugar is? What about Muscovado or Demerara? What about shortcrust pastry? Do you know how many different types of sugar this magazine has in it? Do you know how cool I think it is to have 6 types of sugar? I have to get to Europe, pronto. These people know what life is.
 There is only one problem. Everything is in measurements that Katie (I) cannot comprehend. I’m looking online, and things just don’t translate well. Things are in grams and degrees celsius, and I am confused, big time,

It took me a really long time to figure out how much chocolate to use.

Did I mention my food scale just flipped out on me a few days ago? Uh oh.
Don’t worry. I’m kind of a genius. 
I kind of figured out how much of everything to use. 
And I loved this tart/pie so much that I think I’ll make it again for Thanksgiving.
 What can be bad about pecans, chocolate, and shortbread crust?
Chocolate and Pecan Tart
Adapted from Good Housekeeping Easy Bakes and Puds

2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup butter, cubed
3 oz milk chocolate, finely chopped
5 tbsp unsalted butter
2 large eggs
1/3 cup caster (or superfine) sugar*
8oz Lyle's golden syrup*
1tsp vanilla extract
4oz pecans, finely chopped
4 oz pecan halves, to decorate
1 cup heavy whipping cream
4tbsp powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit, put a baking sheet in the oven to heat it up.
Pulse flour, powdered sugar, and 3/4 cup butter in a food processor 8-10 times or until mixture resembles coarse meal. Pat mixture evenly on bottom and up sides of a lightly greased 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom.
Bake for 10 minutes in preheated oven, then allow to cool.
Melt the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure the base of the bowl doesn't touch the water. Cool slightly.
In a large bowl beat together the eggs, sugar, golden syrup, vanilla, and cooled chocolate mixture. Fold in the chopped pecans, then pour into the pastry crust. Decorate the top with pecan halves. Put the tart on the hot baking sheet and bake for 40-45 minutes until just set. 
Whip whipping cream in large bowl until medium peaks form, mix in 4tbsp powdered sugar. 

Serve tart warm or at room temperature with a large dollop of whipped cream.

*You can make superfine sugar by placing granulated sugar in a food processor. But I think using regular granulated sugar would work alright as well.
* You can substitute corn syrup for actual golden syrup. You can get golden syrup at Wegmans or any british food store.

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