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Author Notes: I love the taste of orange and chocolate together, so I wanted to create a tart that captured that delicious combination. California navel oranges are so plentiful right now, so I was inspired to make some homemade orange marmalade for my tart. Paired with a good, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread crust and the creamy texture of mascarpone flavored with a little cognac makes this tart a surprisingly elegant dessert. —susan_kuehn_knutson
Makes 16 4-inch tarts
- 6 organic California navel oranges
- 6 cups granulated sugar
- 8 cups water
- Wash and dry the oranges. Slice the ends off of the oranges. With a mandoline, cut the oranges into very thin slices (as thin as you can get them). Place the sliced oranges, sugar and water into a heavy pan. Stir to combine. Place on high heat. Stirring frequently, let the mixture come to a boil. Once the mixture starts to boil, reduce the heat to medium and let it simmer until the temperature reaches 200 degrees on a candy thermometer. Continue stirring frequently while the mixture simmers. Cook until the mixture is reduced by half and looks thick and glossy, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Turn off the heat and let stand while you prepare the shortbread crust, chocolate ganache, and mascarpone creme.
Shortbread crust, Bittersweet Chocolate Ganache and Mascarpone Creme
- For the shortbread crust:
- 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup rice flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- For the bittersweet chocolate ganache:
- 1/2 pint heavy cream
- 8 ounces 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- For the mascarpone creme:
- 16 ounces mascarpone cheese
- 2 tablespoons Cognac (or more, to taste)
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- To make the shortbread crust: In the bowl of a stand mixer, place the butter, sugar and egg yolk and beat until combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix until the dough comes together into a ball. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll to 1/8-inch thickness. Using a 4-inch circle cutter, cut dough and place into 3-inch tartlet pans. Press dough into the tartlet pan. If there is a little dough above the top of the tartlet pan, roll your rolling pin over the top of the pan to neatly cut the excess dough. Prick the crust randomly with a fork to avoid bubbles in the crust. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 12-14 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and immediately put enough marmalade into each tartlet crust to fill almost to the top (about 1/8 cup). Set aside while you make the ganache.
- To make the bittersweet chocolate ganache: In a small saucepan, place heavy cream and heat just until very warm. Stir in bittersweet chocolate and remove from heat. Keep stirring until the chocolate is melted and the ganache looks smooth and shiny. Drizzle the ganache over each tart.
- To make the mascarpone creme: Place the mascarpone in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the cognac and sugar and mix on low speed to combine. When ready to serve, place a dollop of the mascarpone creme on top of each tart. Garnish with a piece or orange peel from the marmalade. Enjoy!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Late Winter Tart (Sweet or Savory)
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