Daring Bakers – Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart

I had a dream one night about a tart with a chocolate layer on top of a caramel layer.  I don’t normally dream about desserts, but I knew I had to search out a recipe for this one.  I looked, but didn’t find anything that matched what I saw in my head.  And then, the August Daring Bakers challenge was announced and it was the tart from my dream! 

The only thing I needed to buy for this recipe was a tart pan. I went to Williams Sonoma because I wanted a nice pan. Cost – $18.00

I was making this for a family gathering. I made the crust Wednesday evening, then baked the tart Thursday evening. I was rushed and it showed in the final product. It tasted good, but I knew it could be better. Because the crust recipe makes enough for three crusts, I jumped at the chance to make it again for a barbecue. This time I took my time, corrected my mistakes and voila! It turned out so much better.

For the full recipe, visit Veronica or Patricia.

Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart

The crust is a chocolate shortbread pastry that was made the day before, then refrigerated. First step, grind the hazelnuts.

This wasn’t a traditional crust recipe, it had more of a cookie dough like consistency until the cake flour was added.

The next day, I rolled the crust out and pressed it into the pan. Off to the oven!

I caramelized the sugar using the dry method first. It would have been fine except the pan I used wasn’t wide enough. I think. Either way, the sugar didn’t fully crystallize and I rushed it and added the cream which wasn’t room temp so it seized.

Try #2 with the alternate caramel method worked perfectly and my cream was room temp this time. But, I didn’t let the caramel cool before adding in the egg/flour mixture. Consequently, it went into the oven a little too hot and never really set.

The chocolate mousse didn’t turn out so well either. I cooled the chocolate too much. When I folded it into the whip cream it froze into little chocolate chips. Bah. It tasted good though!

On Saturday I made the tart again, this time cooling the caramel before adding the egg/flour mixture, and not cooling the chocolate so much. Perfection! I also made sure to roll my crust a little thinner so my layers could be more even.


31 Responses to “Daring Bakers – Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart”

  1. veron Says:

    Your tart is certainly perfection. I love the gorgeous ,delicous-looking layers!

  2. Patricia Scarpin Says:

    I think your tart looks beautiful and tasted delicious!

  3. baking soda Says:

    I admire your stamina! Well done, love the layers!

  4. Deborah Says:

    You just solved my problem for me!! I couldn’t figure out why my mousse wasn’t working, and someone suggested that my chocolate could have been too hot. I think it was too cool!!! I feel so relieved now, knowing the answer! Your tart looks great – your caramel layer is perfect!

  5. Mary Says:

    I think I also had the same problem with my chocolate being too cool. I also had little bits of chocolate throughout. I’m glad you were able to make slight corrections to the second tart. It looks perfect.

  6. Anne Says:

    Wonderful post and your tart couldn’t be any better. Love how the crust turned out beautufully for you 🙂 well done!

  7. Morven Says:

    That chocolate mousse looks so nice and fluffy. Great photos!

  8. Ivonne Says:

    Isn’t it great when dreams come true! Beautiful tart!

  9. Sara Says:

    Very nice. Good for you to have the patience to try again and work out the kinks.

  10. Elle Says:

    Two tarts! and you can really see the changes in the second one. Such lovely layers and creamy looking caramel and fluffy mousse. Yummy!!

  11. peabody Says:

    Way to photograph all the steps, that is a nice touch. Well done.

  12. Anne Says:

    Ah, the second one looks great! Thanks for all the photos!

  13. Dharm Says:

    Wow. to have had the patience to do it twice! Well done and the tart certainly looks great!

  14. Amanda Says:

    I think yours turned out brilliantly. I love all your pics too!

  15. Lisa Says:

    Wow – 3 times! Dedication, for sure =) How funny that you dreamed it first.. what are you dreaming for September?? I hope it’s as yummy as this month’s tart! hee!

    Well I think both tarts pictured are gorgeous – and I love the beautiful layers you got on the third one!

    way to go!

  16. Wendy Says:

    Two whole tarts- wow. You have a “do it till its right” attitude. Good for you. Your tart looks great. Your crust is so even and thin. Wendy

  17. Tartelette Says:

    Great job and bravo for your perseverance! The tart looks great! Hey, now that you have psychic powers…what’s cooking for September?

  18. Aoife Says:

    Both versions look good, but you can really see the difference between them. It’s amazing what a little practice and experience can do!

  19. Jenny Says:

    I love the progress your blog shows as you applied what you learned. The second one looks so creamy!

  20. Renata Says:

    That’s a fascinating whisk/stirrer thing you have. I’ve never seen one before.

  21. Amy Says:

    Mine solidified into little chocolate chunks too. But it still looks great! Well done!

  22. Katie Says:

    Its a shame about your topping, but I bet it still tasted great. Probably added a nice texture to the topping. It looks yummy.

  23. Inne Says:

    Wow, you made this tart twice! Such dedication to the DBs!

  24. Andrea Says:

    Good for you to tackle it twice! It looks luscious.

  25. erincooks Says:

    Renata – I used to work at a gourmet cooking store and we would get random stuff for meeting sales goals. I’ve had that whisk/stirrer thing for years and never really knew what to use it for. Works perfectly for caramel when your other whisk is dirty!

  26. Tanna Says:

    Erin now you know, dreams really do come true. Beautiful job on the tart. It’s worth doing this one twice.
    Beautiful tart.

  27. Jenny Says:

    What a difference a little experience makes – your two tarts look completely different from each other!

  28. Chris Says:

    Wow -your perseverance paid off! Great job!

  29. Dolores Says:

    You did it, despite the setbacks. THAT is the mark of perfection!

  30. breadchick Says:

    WOW! 2 tarts!!! Great job on the challenge (both times!)

  31. Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart II - Taste and Tell Says:

    […] from reading other Daring Baker’s blogs. I learned why my mousse didn’t work – my chocolate was too cool. I learned to add the butter to the caramel before the cream to prevent it from seizing. I learned […]

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