Chocolate brûlée tart with cherry parfait

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 8 people

  • 625 gm pitted cherries (see note)
  • 300 gm caster sugar, plus extra to serve
  • 1 tbsp cornflour mixed with 1 tbsp water
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 250 gm mascarpone
  • 450 ml pouring cream, whisked to soft peaks
  •  
  • Chocolate pastry
  • 250 gm butter, softened
  • 125 gm pure icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 425 gm plain flour
  • 25 gm Dutch-process cocoa
  •  
  • Chocolate brûlée
  • 7 egg yolks
  • 500 ml (2 cups) pouring cream
  • 90 gm caster sugar
  • 50 ml milk
  • 165 gm dark chocolate (71% cocoa solids), coarsely chopped
01   For cherry reduction, combine 375gm cherries, 75gm sugar and 200ml water in a saucepan and stir over medium heat to dissolve sugar. Bring to the boil, cool, then process in a blender until smooth and pass through a fine sieve into a clean saucepan. Bring purée to the boil over medium heat, then simmer over low heat until reduced to 200ml (20-30 minutes). Set aside to cool.
02   For cherry compote, combine remaining cherries, 75gm sugar and 200ml water in a saucepan and stir over medium heat to dissolve sugar. Bring to the boil, then simmer over low heat for 2 minutes, add cornflour mixture and stir until sauce thickens (3-5 minutes). Set cherry compote aside to cool.
03   For cherry parfait, combine remaining sugar and 2 tbsp water in a saucepan and stir over medium heat to dissolve sugar, then cook until syrup reaches 121C on a sugar thermometer (3-5 minutes). Meanwhile, whisk yolks in an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, add sugar syrup in a steady stream and whisk until thick and cool (3-5 minutes). In a bowl, combine mascarpone and half the cherry reduction, add yolk mixture and stir to combine. Fold in cream, pour into a 1.5 litre-capacity container, cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm (2-3 hours).
04   For chocolate pastry, preheat oven to 180C. Beat butter and sugar in an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, add yolk and milk and beat to combine. Stir in flour and cocoa, turn onto a lightly floured work surface and knead lightly until smooth. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm (1-2 hours). Roll pastry on a lightly floured work surface to 4mm thick, then use to line the base of a baking paper-lined 20cm x 30cm cake pan (paper should overhang sides). Rest for 1 hour in refrigerator. Blind bake until almost dry (15-20 minutes), then remove paper and weights and bake until cooked through (3-5 minutes). Cool.
05   For chocolate brûlée, reduce oven to 110C. Whisk yolks in a heatproof bowl. Combine cream, sugar and milk in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Remove from heat, add chocolate and stir occasionally until smooth and glossy. Pour over yolks and whisk to combine, then strain through a fine sieve. Pour into prepared pan and bake until almost set (30-35 minutes). Cool, then refrigerate until set (1-2 hours). Remove from pan, trim edges and cut into six to eight portions, scatter with extra sugar and caramelise with a blowtorch. Serve chocolate brûlée tart with scoops of cherry parfait, cherry compote and remaining cherry reduction.
Note Use frozen pitted cherries if unavailable.

Recipe:

IAN CURLEY, THE EUROPEAN

Photography:

WILLIAM MEPPEM

Styling:

EMMA KNOWLES

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