Chocolate Caramel Crunch Torte

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Listen…can you hear them…the angels singing from heaven, in pure delight to the caramel, chocolate in this torte.

I had never made a torte before, hell, I didn’t even own a tart pan, so I had to get one for this week (which I’m certain will be used a lot), any boy was it worth it…I had to make the caramel twice, the first time it tasted burnt, and I could barely stomach a tiny taste of it, so instead of melting the sugar a little at a time, I did it all at once, and it seemed to go much better for me the second time around. I also used walnuts instead of the peanuts the recipe called for, just because, and I also used a little extra of the caramel sauce I made a few days earlier for caramel apples, so once cut open, the caramel just oozed out the side.

What you’ll need and do:

Caramel

Scant 1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon corn syrup
2 tablespoons salted butter, cut into 4 pieces, room temperature

Ganache
8 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup + 2 tablespoons heavy cream
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces, room temperature

3/4 cup honey-roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
1 9-inch tart shell made with Dorie’s Sweet Tart Dough (p.444), fully baked and cooled

Getting Ready: Because you have to work quickly once the sugar caramelizes, you should have all the ingredients for the caramel measured out and at hand before you start. Also have a medium heatproof bowl at hand to hold the hot caramel.

To Make the Caramel: Bring the heavy cream to a boil.

~Meanwhile, put a medium skillet, preferably nonstick, over medium heat and sprinkle in about 3 tablespoons of the sugar. When it melts, stir it with a wooden spatula or fork and sprinkle over another 3 tablespoons. When that sugar is melted, add the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar – the sugar in the pan may already have started to color, and that’s fine. Stir in the corn syrup and boil the syrup until it reaches a deep caramel color – it will probably begin to smoke, and that’s normal.

~Stand back and stir in the butter. The caramel will bubble furiously and may spatter, so make sure you’re away from the action. When the butter is in, add the warm cream – the caramel will bubble furiously again. Lower the temperature just a tad and let the caramel boil for just 2 minutes (226F on candy thermometer). Pour the seething caramel into the heatproof bowl and set aside while you make the ganache.

To Make the Ganache: Put the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and have a whisk or a rubber spatula at hand.

~Bring the cream to a boil. Then pour half of it over the chocolate and let sit for 30 seconds. Working with the whisk/spatula, very gently stir the chocolate and cream together in small circles. Pour in the remainder of the cream and blend it into the chocolate. When the ganache is smooth and shiny, stir in the butter piece by piece. Don’t stir any more than you must to blend the ingredients – the less you work it, the darker, smoother and shinier it will be.

~Cover the ganache with plastic wrap, pressing it against the surface to create an airtight seal. Set aside at room temperature for the moment.

To Assemble the Tart: Stir the peanuts into the caramel. If the caramel has cooled and is too thick to spread easily, gently warm in the microwave in 3-second spurts. Spread the caramel over the bottom of the tart shell; you’ll have a thin layer. Refrigerate the tart for 15 minutes to set the caramel.

~Check the ganache. If it has thickened, warm it in 3-second spurts. Rap the bowl to break any surface bubbles, pour the ganache over the caramel and jiggle the pan to even it.

~Refrigerate for 30 minutes – no longer – then keep it at room temperature until serving time.

-From Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

I ate this piece in about a minute, couldn’t put it down, it was SO good…My taste buds were so happy with this one…

Enjoy…

-Raelynn

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Author: Raelynn

Born in small town South Dakota, raised in Sin City Las Vegas, now living in Mile High Denver...life is my adventure and I'm sharing it here, one project, one recipe, one day at a time.

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