Hi I'm Leonie, Collector of feathers, pebbles, words and adventures, with an overactive mind and a sunshine-filled heart.

This blog is all about: NATURE ~ RUNNING ~ ART ~ FOOD ~ LOVE ~ SELF-DISCOVERY

Salted caramel and dark chocolate soft shell tarts

I keep planning to create more savory recipes, but my sweet tooth gets the better of me. This little tart filled with date 'caramel' is a delicious treat made from lovely real food ingredients.

I love caramel tarts but I've never really liked the thought of condensed milk (although in the past I would happily eat it in caramel tart form). It always seemed like such an odd alien ingredient; all runny and goopy like that slime you make in science class from cornflour and water.

But - enter the hero of this recipe: DATE caramel. So simple and rich and delicious.

I was a little heavy-handed with my chocolate top and had trouble getting through it with a spoon - a delicate thin layer would be much easier to crack.

This recipe makes two tarts in regular sized ramekins; perfect for you and a friend on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Or maybe you need to eat both, you know, just to check that they taste ok.  ;)

Salted Caramel Soft Shell Tarts 

(Makes two)

1/3 cup almond meal
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon raw organic cacao powder
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon agave syrup

1 cup pitted dates
1/4 cup sultanas
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of ground Himalayan salt

For the top
About 20g / about two rows of your favourite organic dark chocolate, melted
Extra pinch of salt

Combine the dry base ingredients in a high speed blender - if you like you can leave some bigger bits for texture. Then add the melted butter and agave and pulse till the mixture comes together.

Divide the base between two ramekins and press firmly into the bottom and up the sides. Pop these in the fridge while you make the filling.

Give your blender a quick rinse then mix up all the filling ingredients except the salt till you get a thick paste. You may need to adjust the amount of water depending on how well your blender mixes. Stir through the salt.

Scoop out the delicious date paste and divide it equally between the two ramekins. You'll have plenty left over.* Smooth the tops and put them back in the fridge or freezer for 5 minutes while you gently melt your chocolate over a low heat.

Drizzle a very thin layer of chocolate onto each tart (too thick and you will have trouble cracking it with a spoon like I did), and leave to set in the fridge for an hour or so.

* Date paste is great as a jam substitute, on toast with ricotta, or stir a spoonful through your porridge. You can use it as a dip for apples or a lush topping for plain greek yoghurt.

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