Thursday, 15 May 2014

Café au Lait Tartlets

My eldest son Linus has been away for 4 days on a physically demanding school camp. He's been in the high-country hiking, rafting, pitching tents, lifting, cooking for himself on a camp stove and probably doing it all in the same set of clothes he left in, even though he took enough changes of clothes for 4 days. I made him these little chocolate tartlets to welcome him home.  He loves the flavours of coffee and chocolate together... I have no idea where he gets it from.

Café au Lait Tartlets
adapted from Gourmet Traveller
Makes 4

For the Pastry:
75g plain flour (I used cake flour)
20g pure icing sugar
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
40g cold unsalted butter, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons chilled water (more or less)

For the Filling:
180ml cream
60ml espresso
30g dark chocolate, finely chopped
3 egg yolks
40g caster sugar
Melted dark chocolate to decorate

Make the Pastry:
Put the flour, icing sugar, salt and butter into a food processor and blitz until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add enough chilled water the bring the mixture together into a dough that collects around the blade. Turn the dough out, form it into a disc and put it into the fridge to chill for 2 hours.

Take the pastry out of the fridge and divide it into 4 even portions. Roll each portion out until it is 2mm thick and line 4 x 10cm round springform cake pans with it. Set the pans on a baking tray and return them to the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.

Make the Tartlets:
Preheat the oven to 180C.

Line each of the pastry cases with a piece of baking paper and fill each with baking weights (I used dried beans). Bake them on the baking tray for about 15 minutes, until starting to go golden at the edges. Remove the paper and weights and return them to the oven for a further 5 - 10 minutes until they are golden and crisp.

Reduce the oven temperature to 160C.

Combine the cream, coffee and chocolate in a small saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring it to just under boiling point. Stir until the chocolate has melted.

Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar. Slowly add the hot cream mixture. Add a little at a time so that you don't scramble the eggs. Pour the mixture through a fine sieve into a jug and skim the bubbles from the surface. Pour into the pastry cases and bake until just set, 12 - 15 minutes until just set. Cool to room temperature and decorate with melted chocolate.


  1. I would fly across the pond for these!

    1. I would be here with a tartlet on a plate for you.

  2. Firstly, that camp sounds awesome! Maybe more awesome for a teenaged boy that a twenty something woman, but I wouldn't mind giving it a try :)
    Secondly, days in the wilderness would definitely be made easier knowing that my wonderful mum at home was making my favourite flavours into a delicious tart!

    1. Thanks Amy. Linus is very lucky that he goes to a school with an awesome outdoor ed program. Next year he gets to hike in the snow on an Alpine camp. May be you could tag along. I think he missed his mums cooking while he was away. He did say they cooked chocolate chip damper in the fire though - that sounds like my kinda camping.

  3. Delicious! What a wonderful thing to come home to.

  4. Linus has good taste! Coffee and chocolate? Heavenly. Particularly if you've burned enough energy to justify the consumption of... uh, maybe two of these babies? Seriously good stuff.

    1. Thanks Laura. Linus is a coffee and chocolate man for sure. Dark chocolate too. None of this milk chocolate business for him. He burned lots of energy hiking and not washing I think.

  5. This looks so great! And what great photos you made! Thanks for sharing the recipe :)

  6. Oh my goodness. Definitely a reward for all that work. Gorgeous to look at and even better to eat I'm sure!! My son Andrew never took a shower while away at camp last summer. He said he didn't have to, because he swam in the lake everyday. :/ And there was a case of Norovirus going around. He came home, I made him take two showers and I threw out the clothes he'd worn. It was bad. Very bad..

    1. Hahaha. Teenage you've got to love them... after they've showered... twice.