Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Pumpkin Tart

Pumpkins seem to be a favorite ingredient in Wizarding World fare. Add tarts to the equation and you have the perfect dessert for a British Start-of-Term Feast at Hogwarts:

"At long last, when the last morsels of pumpkin tart had melted from the golden platters, Dumbledore gave the word that it was time for them all to go to bed, and they got their chance" (Prisoner of Azkaban 94).

The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook contains a recipe that takes this pumpkin tart a step further than simple pumpkin pie. So today we shall make No-Bake Chocolate-Bottom Tart. Except that you do actually bake the crust... so... yeah. Here we go!

For the crust, You Will Need:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt
3 Tbs granulated sugar
3/4 stick (6 Tbs) cold butter, cut into chunks
1 large egg yolk
2 Tbs heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla

For the chocolate bottom, You Will Need:
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped

For the pumpkin filling, You Will Need:
1.5 cups canned pumpkin (not pie filling)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 large eggs
1 Tbs cornstarch
1.5 oz bittersweet chocolate, melted, for drizzling, if desired

1. To make the tart dough, place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Scatter the butter pieces over the flour and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse yellow meal. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
2. Whisk together the egg yolk, cream, and vanilla and pour over the flour mixture.

3. Toss with a spatula until the dough begins to stick together. Knead into a ball, press into a disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or up to 3 days.
4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. On a generously floured surface, roll out the tart dough into an 11" disk. Tart dough is hard to roll out, I recommend rolling it twice, and using a lot of flour.  Fit the dough into a 9" tart pan (I don't have one, so I use a pie pan. If you do this, keep in mind that pie pans are deeper!).

5. Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork, cover completely with aluminum foil, and fill with pie weights or beans. Bake for 20 minutes or until the dough is dry and set.

6. Remove the foil and weights, reduce the heat to 350 degrees, and bake for another 10 minutes until the crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven to cool.
7. Place the chocolate and cream in a microwavable bowl and melt them together, stirring at intervals until smooth.
8. Pour the melted chocolate into the crust and let it cool until set. Heads up, this takes a long time. I even put mine in the fridge for awhile, and it still wasn't 100% set when I got impatient and moved on to the next step.

9. While your chocolate is firming up, combine the pumpkin, sugar, spices, and cream in a medium saucepan and cook, stirring frequently, until hot but not bubbling.

10. Whisk the eggs with the cornstarch and add to the pan. Continue cooking, (gently) stirring constantly, until thickened and bubbling. Remove from the heat and cool to room temperature.

11. Pour the cooled filling into the tart shell and smooth the top with a spatula. If desired, drizzle melted chocolate on top. Refrigerate until firm.

It turns out that you really need to let this tart set overnight, otherwise the chocolate will still be liquidy when you eat it. If I made it again, I would definitely use a little less cream in the chocolate bottom mixture, since it didn't become remotely solid until about 12 hours in the fridge. But regardless of the texture (which is kind of like melty pumpkin pie...), this tart is actually quite tasty. The chocolate is very subtle, and compliments the pumpkin flavors very well. So if you decide to try this one out, go easy on the cream. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Just made this -- one thing they didn't explain in the book was that you need to have the crust for the tart go up the sides of the pan and NOT just cover the bottom. I was going to do that, but the directions seemed to indicate otherwise. Oh well. I'll know better next time, but it's seriously delicious!