“Chocolate Tart” from “Tom Kerridge’s Best Ever Dishes”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIf you’d like to make this yourself, find the recipe on the BBC website by clicking through this sentence.

I made this for Sunday lunch. I would have included some dialogue but for the presence of Pablo, our Spanish exchange student, at the table. So we let Pablo off the hook.

Not surprisingly, it was delicious. I say, “not surprisingly” because it used 750 grams of milk chocolate. That’s a lot of milk chocolate. Through bitter experience I know that you need to get good-quality milk chocolate for a recipe like this (and Tom Kerridge backed me up on this because he said to get “the best quality you can find”). So getting 750 grams of Green & Black’s milk chocolate meant I needed to get a second mortgage on the house.

Kidding. But it was still expensive.

I deviated from the original recipe in one crucial respect. It called for a 36 by 12 centimetre rectangular tart pan, which we don’t have. I’m sure you’re not surprised to hear that I am loathe to buy special equipment when I test out recipes for Cookbook a Month (I would need a second-second mortgage– or would that be second mortgage squared?). So I found out that my 9 inch round tart pan was compatible, volume size, with the one Tom said we should use, so I went with my own pan. I’m pretty sure it would taste the same if it was a rectangular shape or a round shape, but perhaps further testing is required.

The recipe for the pastry and the tart worked great. I was dubious that milk chocolate would work, as I usually use dark chocolate for this sort of recipe, but milk chocolate was also good. The coffee cream was a nice touch, but the majority of the table (i.e. those under the age of 16) were ambivalent, so I don’t know if I’d go to the trouble of making it again.

The aspect of the recipe that didn’t work at all was the topping of carmalised almonds. This might be down to operator error, or it might be down to vague instructions, or it could be a combination of them both. Either way, it was a faff and it was frustrating that it didn’t turn out how I expected it would. (However, having just watched him making this on BBC iPlayer, it turns out I did it exactly right. I guess I just didn’t like it.)

When it came time to eat it, I was surprised by how strong the amaretto was. I didn’t like it, and the reaction at the table was mixed. By the next day, I decided to give a fair portion of it to my friends who made appreciative noises when I told them I was making it the day before. They LOVED it. I still was unconvinced.

But by the time I had another slice two days later, the strong amaretto taste had disappeared and I can say it was absolutely delicious.

Would I make this again? Yes, but I don’t know if I’d go to the trouble of making the coffee cream or the topping. But the rest of it gets an A*.


“Chocolate Tart” from “Tom Kerridge’s Best Ever Dishes”

“Warm Chocolate Fondant Tart” from “Mary Berry Cooks”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMaureen: Yeah! Chocolate Tart!

Tim: Mary Berry is hardly reinventing the wheel here, is she?

Maureen: No, but who doesn’t love a chocolate tart?

Nicholas (10): Is this warm?

Maureen: It is indeed, just like Mary told me to do. She did want me to stencil some icing sugar on the top, but I chose not to do that. I don’t think it needs it, though if I were trying to impress dinner guests, I would do it.

Andrew (14): Aren’t you trying to impress us?

Maureen: Nope.

Andrew: Why not?

Maureen: Seriously? Isn’t a homemade chocolate tart enough for you?

Nicholas: It is for me. This is delicious.

Andrew: Wow. This is good.

Maureen: This is the only recipe from the book where we all like it.

Tim: She does know how to bake, that Mary Berry. Is there a soggy bottom?

Maureen: Absolutely not. Was it hard to get it out of the pan?

Tim: I used my superior skills to get it out without a problem.

Maureen: Ha! I think that was down to the non-stick tart pan. Should I make it again?

Boys: Yes, please!



“Warm Chocolate Fondant Tart” from “Mary Berry Cooks”