Salted Dark Chocolate Tart with Italian Espresso Meringue

Spokane is Sweet By Brittany Kulland

There is a crazy abundance of good coffee around here. Honestly, it’s a benefit of living in the Pacific Northwest to be able to stop on almost any corner not just for the big name brand of caffeinated goodness, but for locally-owned, even locally-roasted coffee. One of my favorites is the recently opened Evans Brothers Coffee Roasters. You can find them in the Wonder Building on N Post Street in Spokane. Get yourself a dark chocolate mocha. You won’t be sorry! 

The natural pairing for all of this coffee is, of course, chocolate. With a lightly sweet, buttery crust, a rich, satisfying filling, and a light as air topping, this tart is as impressive as it is amazing-good (as my four year old says). It’s the perfect addition to your next dinner party, your next Thursday evening, your next date night in…are you sensing a theme? Just make it. You’ll see! 

Make this recipe at home? Have another favorite coffee dessert to share? Take a picture and tag #spokaneissweet and #edibleinlandnw!

by Brittany Kulland
photo by Ari Nordhagen

For the Crust:
1 C unsalted butter, room temperature
1 C granulated sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
2 tsp baking powder 
½ tsp kosher salt
3 C all purpose flour

For the Chocolate Filling:
16 oz dark chocolate (at least 60% cocoa)
12 oz full fat coconut milk
1 Tbs espresso
½ tsp kosher or sea salt

For the Italian Meringue:
5 egg whites at room temperature
Pinch salt
¼ tsp cream of tartar
¼ C water
2 Tbs espresso
1 C granulated sugar

Crust:

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar well. Add egg and extracts and mix until thoroughly incorporated. In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients. Add to butter mixture one cup at a time. If needed, turn dough out on a floured surface and knead until smooth. 
  • Roll out to a ¼’ thick circle. Press dough into a 10” fluted tart pan. Freeze for 10 minutes. 
  • Line with foil and fill with beans, pie weights, or sugar. Blind bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil and weights, and bake an additional 5 minutes. Allow to cool completely.

Salted Chocolate Filling:

  • Chop chocolate into pea-sized chunks and place in a heat-proof bowl. In a sauce pan, heat coconut milk, espresso, and salt until simmering. Pour over chocolate and let stand 5 minutes. Mix gently until completely incorporated. 
  • Pour into cooled tart shell. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, or overnight. 
  • When ready to serve, allow to come to room temperature. 

Espresso Meringue: 

  • In a sauce pan, heat sugar, water, and espresso to 220F. In a clean stand mixer bowl, begin whipping egg whites and salt on medium speed. When egg whites are foamy, add cream of tartar and begin whipping on high speed. Whip to firm peaks. Do not stop mixer. 
  • While whites are whipping, continue heating sugar mixture to 239F. With the mixer running, slowly pour sugar down the side of the bowl into the whites. Continue whipping until bowl is room temperature to the touch, about 10 minutes. 
  • Spoon a generous mound of meringue onto chocolate tart. Using a kitchen torch, brown meringue. Slice tart with a hot knife and serve immediately. 

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