Make Ahead

Cardamom- Banana Caramel Sauce Tart with chocolate mousse

February 11, 2012
3 Ratings
Photo by PistachioDoughnut
  • Serves 8 to 10
Author Notes

Recently, I bought a candy thermometer as I was thinking of making caramels, instead of caramels I thought of making caramel sauce. Instead of traditional almond based crust for tart I made chocolate tart with hazelnuts for that nutella effect. Fill the tart with this wonderful banana cardamom caramel and top it of with chocolate mousse. First, I tried to top it of ice-cream, but I was not happy with that. So, I whipped up some heavy cream with chocolate and that gave a good effect. I hope everyone likes it. —Devangi Raval

Test Kitchen Notes

With three distinct layers: a hazelnut, chocolate tart base, smothered with a rich caramel banana sauce subtly flavored with cardamom, and topped by a rich, chocolate, coffee mousse, there's something in this dish for everyone! The 10 people that tasted this dessert gave it a solid A-/B+. Remarks ranged from many "OMG"s, to "could use more cardamom", "less banana", and "more coffee flavor". Everyone agreed that the coffee chocolate mousse is the best part of the dish. The tart base was more cake like than a traditional shortbread crust. Mashing and straining the banana is a critical step to ensure a smooth caramel. A dish worthy of a dinner party for sure! —Food52

What You'll Need
  • Chocolate Tart
  • 1 cup AP Flour
  • 2/3 cup Hazelnuts, toasted and husked, finely grind to powder
  • 1 Stick chilled unsalted butter cut into pieces
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1.5 tablespoons Cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon Baking powder
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Pinch Salt
  • 2 tablespoons Cold Milk or heavycream
  • For the Banana - Cardamom caramel Sauce and Chocolate mousse
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 3.5 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup Cream
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 2 teaspoons Cardamom powder
  • 2 Bananas mashed and strained
  • 1 cup Milk chocolate or dark chocolate as per your liking
  • 1.5 cups Heavy whipping cream
  • 1.5 teaspoons Coffee
  1. Place sugar and hazelnuts in bowl of food processor and process until nuts are finely ground, about 30 seconds. Add flour and salt along with cocoa powder , baking powder and pulse once or twice to blend. Scatter butter pieces over mixture and pulse 7 or 8 times, until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. I used my brand new Kitchen Aid mixer which I recently received as a gift.yay!
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk, milk . Pour egg mixture over flour mixture and pulse 5 or 6 times until dough just comes together. Scrape dough out onto work surface and gently knead 6 to 8 times, until smooth. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.
  3. Position oven rack in center of oven. Heat to 375°F. Arrange tart pan on baking sheet. Place chilled dough on work surface and roll out to large round that is about 1/8-inch thick. Drape dough over tart pan, gently pressing it into the interior of the pan. Roll rolling pin over dough and remove excess dough. Press dough into pan evenly, removing excess dough, if necessary. Line the pan with 9 inches round of parchment paper and fill with dried beans or rice. Blind bake** tarts for 15 minutes until crust begins to turn golden brown at edges. Remove weights and parchment paper from pan and bake it for another 10 minutes or so till you see it is baked evenly. Let tart shell cool while preparing the filling.
  4. Place sugar and water in medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally or until sugar is dissolved. Stop stirring; increase heat to high and cook until sugar caramelizes and turns a golden amber color. Remove from heat and carefully add cream, stirring until smooth (return to heat for a minute if a few lumps remain). Stir in butter until melted. Transfer to cup with pouring spout. Cover and refrigerate until the tart shell cools down and we are ready to assemble.
  5. Now , till the caramel sauce cools down a little bit prepare chocolate mousse.I melt the chocolate on a double boiler or in a microwave stirring in between and about for one minute then stirred and another one minute. Add the heavy cream to the melted chocolate and add a teaspoon of coffee and whip it up with the help of a blender. (instead of whipping the cream and folding the chocolate I mixed both the things and whipped it together) .
  6. Now, take the Tart shell, fill it with caramel sauce and let it cool a little bit in the fridge or if you feel it is cooled enough and you can spread the chocolate mousse on top of it then go ahead. So , layer it with chocolate mousse. Spread the mousse properly and evenly. Decorate it with bananas or hazelnuts. Chill it for half an hour or if you can wait unlike me then for an hour and serve it with a dollop of whipped cream.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Devangi Raval
    Devangi Raval
  • Burnt Offerings
    Burnt Offerings
  • LeBec Fin
    LeBec Fin

7 Reviews

Devangi R. March 1, 2012
Thanks for the review!
Definitely, the cardamom and coffee could have been added more. It depends again on the crowd if they like extra cardamom flavor or not...we really like it ans the same lies with coffee. Would work on the tart shell ! Actually, I made a single small tart(which vanished in minutes, even before I could take a pic) because we are just two of us..and did not want a big tart lying around in the house. So, the proportions might have been little bit here there.
I am glad that everybody liked it and it was not a disaster!
Burnt O. March 1, 2012
You're off to a GREAT start! No worries. A couple of notes on the recipe itself: This is a complex recipe with multiple components, but it could benefit from some very simple housekeeping tips. (1) Remember to list all your ingredients in the exact order that they are incorporated into the recipe. It can be confusing if ingredients are listed out of sequence, as they are in the caramel sauce. (2) Don't assume everyone knows how to blind bake a tart crust, or make a good caramel sauce, which are critical to this dish. Walk them through the steps of actually creating a caramel sauce, with clear instructions and the perquisite warnings about adding warm cream to a hot caramel, the boiling that ensues, and doing it off heat for safety. (3) The same goes for creating a mousse. Explaining the proper process of tempering melted chocolate with cream would be great for a novice cook, and lead to a much better outcome for them, while educating them on technique at the same time.

I'm the same way - I often take it for granted that people know how to do things I do without even thinking about them. It took me hours to upload my first couple of recipes on the site. Writing a clear, succinct, recipe is often much harder than making the actual dish itself!
Burnt O. February 25, 2012
I'm looking forward to testing this over the weekend! I'm taking it to an Oscar party celebration, so it will gets lots of independent reviews other than my own. Sounds so delicious!
Devangi R. February 28, 2012
Thanks a lot! I am nervous and excited! Waiting for your review...
Devangi R. February 13, 2012
First of all thanks a lot for reminding of the steps because I am so impatient that i missed mentioning them. I have corrected those things. Thanks for letting me know.

Yes, definitely i baked the tart after removing the beans for about 15 minutes.

About the caramel, it wasn't too thick like actual caramel bars or toffees. it did look a little saucy but once it cooled down in tart's belly in fridge it was settled and hold the shape well. The caramel was about medium brown in color. caramel sauce was really goey. Honestly, this was quite a trial and error method for me for caramel making.
About the mousse, yes it is supposed to be whipped and again i missed on that step. I did not use egg whites in mousse but i don't see a reason why you cannot. Actually, i tried with ice cream but then it was going all over the place. So mousse holds up better then ice cream.
The flavor turns out really wonderful , with the first bite which has that chocolate, cream and coffee then immediately follows the cardamom and banana and the crust which has cocoa to brings back the chocolate taste and ofcourse the hazelnuts!

I am sure you will like it and won't share it with anybody. I hope this helps.
I am also a food52 baby, new to it but not newer than Clara and Charlie. I too like South Indian food. I think Gujaratis are everywhere...hehehe..
LeBec F. February 13, 2012
Excellent corrections! Love your description of one's journey through the flavors!
LeBec F. February 12, 2012
devangi,i am new to 52 and am a big fan of southern indian food .here in the boston area there are many gujarattis. I adore cardamom and this sounds tremendous, but i am a little confused.I have questions about each of the components!

When i 'blind bake' a crust with weights-like you have done, after removing the weights, i bake it for a few more minutes so the crust cooks through. Did you mean to include a step like that?

the caramel sauce- how thick is it? is it liquidy or does it set up solid/keep its shape when cut?

the chocolate mousse: A 'mousse' has whipped cream (and usually beaten egg whites) folded into melted chocolate, so it is creamy/airy/fluffy. Your recipe as is would be called a ganache- melted chocolate mixed with liquid heavy cream, which sets up into a solid that holds its shape when cut. Is this what yours is?

What a creative recipe!thank you.