How does Chocolate Raspberry Tart sound to you?

How about learning to make it? Yes? Well, I guess I’ll show you. It’s the least I can do. 😉

Step 1: Make the Shell

Start by beating 10 tablespoons of unsalted butter in an electric mixer until it is creamy. Add ¼ cup granulated sugar, ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract and 2 egg yolks. Mix until smooth. Now add 2 heaping tablespoons of cocoa powder. I used Tollhouse Cocoa Powder because it’s what I happened to have, but a high-quality brand would work perfectly fine. In three additions, add 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour. Do it slowly so it stays in the mixer! While you’re at it, add 1/2 teaspoon of salt for good measure.

Scoop the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap, and wrap it tightly into a disk. Refrigerate for 20 minutes, or be impatient like me and freeze it for 10 minutes.

Turn the dough onto a floured sheet of wax paper. Flour the dough, then place another sheet of wax paper on top. Roll the dough it into a circle 1/8-inch thick. It should be about 11 or 12 inches in diameter. Now for the fun part. Get it into the tart pan. I could give you directions for this, but they would just make it more confusing. Any way you can, get it in and press it into the grooves of the pan. Prick the bottom of the tart with a fork, like so.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line the dough with aluminum foil, and fill it with beans or pie weights. I didn’t have either of these, so I put a cake pan on top of the foil. Bake for 12 minutes, then take it out of the oven and remove the weights and foil. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and bake for another 10-15 minutes.

It should look like this when it comes out. Pretty much the same as when it went in. You should have no problem removing it from the tart pan- do that before filling it. Of course, let it cool before you work with it at all!

Step 2: Make the Custard

This is formally called “pastry cream”, but it looks like custard and tastes like custard so that’s what I’m calling it. In a small saucepan, combine 2/3 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons each of flour and cornstarch, a pinch of salt, 2 cups half-and-half, and 2 large eggs. It’s important to stir this before turning on the heat- you don’t want a poached egg! Place the pot on medium heat and stir constantly for 5-10 minutes. It will go from thin to thick very quickly, so keep your eye on it! Once it starts to bubble, turn off the heat and keep stirring like crazy. Don’t worry if it looks lumpy; the lumps will go away quickly. Add 2 tablespoons unsalted butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Don’t stop stirring! Once it looks like thick vanilla pudding, you can stop and let it cool for a few minutes.

Step 3: Assemble Your Tart

Spoon the custard into your tart shell, and spread it around. You will have some extra custard leftover: it tastes pretty good on its own. Top with raspberries (approximately 3 small cartons) or any other fruit. Strawberries or bananas would probably be great, too. Store in the refrigerator for up to a day. People will think you got this at a bakery, so when you tell them you made it, they’ll be pretty impressed.