Malto Mario


The Lady & Sons

1,000 Italian Recipes

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

A Daring Tart

This month's challenge was simply wonderful and very surprising. At least to me. =)

Our beautiful hostesses this month are my sis, Veronica and the incredibly sweet Patricia. These two lovely ladies chose the Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart from Eric Kayser's Sweet and Savory Tarts for us Daring Bakers.

I have to admit, (don't hate me Sis!) I was at first tickled when I saw the recipe - but then immediately bummed as well. You see, I am a milk chocolate non-liker type person. It's just too sweet. Pairing it with caramel, of all things, and my teeth were screaming in outrage. All I could think about was how sweet this tart would be and therefore I dragged my considerable arse through most of the month without making it.

Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart

I know. I KNOW! I am an idiot. How dare I not trust my Sis and the lovely Patricia? How could I not know that they'd never pick something sickeningly sweet? How silly of me not to realize that the buttery goodness of the caramel layer would completely off-set the sweetness of the milk chocolate mousse? I have no good excuse and I am hanging my head in shame.

'kay I'm over it already. :P

This tart was amazingly good! It was not overly sweet (to us anyway), the sandy crust, the velvety caramel and the creamy mousse were a perfect combination texture wise. The buttery and slightly smoky hits from the caramel were to die for and I believe the whipping cream also lended a hand in taming the sweetness of the chocolate because this mousse had a nice little tang to it. I really enjoyed this tart (too much! *blush*) and so did Hubbs.

Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart

All in all, this recipe was pretty easy. We, as Daring Bakers, had already been through the basics of caramel and I had made my first mousse a few months ago so I didn't think I'd have any problems.


As if.

Okay well to be honest, it wasn't a huge problem.. but annoying enough to make me call my Baking Guru and leave a panicked message on her cell phone.

*beep* "Hi! It's me! This is my monthly panic call! Where the hell are you? Anyhoo, my fakking caramel has turned into giant clumps and looks as dry as the fakking Mojave!! What the hell do I do now? CALL ME. PLEASE!!!"

Of course she wasn't available. Of course. Just my luck - also known as The Bad JuJu.

Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart
You'll notice in this shot, especially, how the mousse is slowly sliding off the gooey caramel.. HAR!

While I waited for her to call me back, I lowered the heat and just kept stirring the sugar until it started to melt again.. in the process it turned into a lovely dark amber and smelled SO GOOD. It took awhile, maybe 5 minutes or so, but eventually and with a lot of stirring, I had perfect caramel.


I added the warmed cream.. she sputtered, she burped, she threatened to overflow - but once she calmed down a bit, I had.. uhhh.. a saucepan full of cream and a big knot of solidified - boulder-like - caramel. WTF? I've made this kind of caramel before and it never did that.. I don't geddit?

So once again.. I stirred.. and stirred.. and then I stirred some more. Finally, it all came together so I could add the butter. Phew!

Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart

I baked the filling for the directed time of 15 minutes, but when I took it out it was still pretty liquidy. I figured that a nice long wait in the fridge would solidify it, but unfortunately over 24 hours later, that wasn't the case. It did thicken up to a gorgeous goo - I mean, as gorgeous as goo can be, yanno? - but it did not look anything like the picture Veronica posted for us. Actually, as of yesterday when I finally remembered to take a photo or two, it was still gooey. But I gotta tell ya.. goo is good. Especially when your talking caramel. So even though my filling didn't look like the picture, I was rather happy with it.

I will make this tart again, as I was suppose to bring it to a friend's house the evening of the day I made it, but because it was so liquidy at that point, I couldn't travel with it. I promised him if it turned out, I'd make it again - so next time the only changes I'll make is to bake the filling until I see that it's thickened properly.

A huge thanks to Veronica and Patricia for being lovely hostesses and picking a truly yummy recipe this month! And as always kids.. don't forget to go check out the other NINETY THREE blogs to see what an amazingly creative group of bakers we've got here. =)


Milk Chocolate and Caramel Tart

PS - My Baking Guru did call me back - about 5 minutes after I put the tart in the oven, and bless her heart, her advice was exactly what I ended up doing.. so I was quite relieved. :D Thanks sweetie! xoxo

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Comments on "A Daring Tart"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/29/2007 8:19 AM) : that caramel goo! I think 15 minutes for the caramel layer was too did add the egg-flour mixture right sis?(just kidding)...
Anyway - glad you like it. I'm a dark chocolate fan too so I had my misgivings about using milk chocolate.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/29/2007 8:52 AM) : 

Woot! You're up! That caramel looks decadent, Lis. I thought I'd lost mine -- I got up this morning and expected to see it published and it wasn't there. Heart Attack. So I took a deep breath, calmed down and looked around, and I found I'd published it on a different page. What a dork. It must be that all that chocolate and caramel rotted my brain. Sheesh!


Blogger Patricia Scarpin said ... (8/29/2007 9:20 AM) : 

Lis, I'm in tears here - laughing so hard I'm crying! :)

I'm sorry to hear (and see) that your caramel filling didn't firm up, but I have to say it looks deliciously creamy - that would be terrific poured over some ice cream!


Blogger Ilva said ... (8/29/2007 9:25 AM) : 

Your tart looks delicious! And so dark and nice!


Blogger Dharm said ... (8/29/2007 10:01 AM) : 

The caramel spilling out all over the place just makes it look even MORE decadent... makes me want to just dive in and gobble the whole thing up! What matters is that you enjoyed it and I think we all did! It's a great dessert!


Blogger Anita said ... (8/29/2007 10:24 AM) : 

Lis, I've had those problems with caramel before's a tricky little bugger isn't it? Just when you think you can turn your back on it...:) I love your end result though, looks gorgeously decadent!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/29/2007 10:39 AM) : 

wow! that is really finger licking good tart! All that delicious gooey caramel dripping all over the mousse tart.


Blogger Katie Zeller said ... (8/29/2007 10:52 AM) : 

I think I just gained 10 lbs reading your blog... but it was worth it, everything read deliciously.
Now I have to go find an exercise blog....


Blogger Deborah said ... (8/29/2007 10:58 AM) : 

Your pictures of it make it look like caramel over brownies, which I love!! All problems aside, yours still looks good and you liked, it so that's what matters! I wish I would have baked mine longer as well....


Blogger Belinda said ... (8/29/2007 11:09 AM) : are just so funny! I have been looking forward to seeing what this month's Daring Bakers challenge was, and reading all of the scoop! This looks decadent with the gooey caramel and chocolate mousse. I would have thought the milk chocolate would have been sickeningly sweet too, especially with the caramel, but it looks and sounds like it was a good match in the end. Yay Daring Bakers! :-)


Blogger Anne said ... (8/29/2007 11:29 AM) : 

Honestly the gooey caramel made you tart simply inviting :) I too loved the taste of this tart.


Blogger Brilynn said ... (8/29/2007 11:32 AM) : 

I can't believe there are 93 of us now... I love how gooey yours is... I think you should just spoon the caramel over ice cream, but that's just me...


Blogger leslie @ definitely not martha said ... (8/29/2007 11:35 AM) : 

I love it!!!!!!!!!!!! The gooey caramel looks SO inviting!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/29/2007 12:48 PM) : 

It looks G-O-R-G-E-O-U-S with all that gooey caramel. Love it!


Blogger Helene said ... (8/29/2007 1:40 PM) : 

You should put all that in a jar and ship it to me!! Caramel goo is gooooddd!!!


Blogger Aoife said ... (8/29/2007 1:43 PM) : 

I too was surprised by how well the flavors worked out. Yours look like rich, fluffy caramel brownies.


Blogger Jen the Bread Freak said ... (8/29/2007 1:51 PM) : 

Mmmmm, to be honest, I think your gooey caramel looks much better than the set up caramel on my tart. It's just a more natural caramel state, the way soft caramel is meant to be. Looks delicious! :D


Blogger Peabody said ... (8/29/2007 3:00 PM) : 

Yes, goo is good. That is what I got too...though mine was more solid until it sat a room temperature for awhile.
As always, I love your mishaps!
I plan on making this again too, but I am going to go with a darker chocolate.


Blogger Kelly-Jane said ... (8/29/2007 3:13 PM) : 

I love the caramel sauce too, looks so gooey and yummy :)


Blogger Meeta K. Wolff said ... (8/29/2007 3:18 PM) : 

This caramel goo and the dark chocolate makes me drool. I think I need a chocolate rush now. Lis, awesome girl!


Blogger Elle said ... (8/29/2007 3:21 PM) : 

When caramel goo is that gorgeous, Lis, who needs solidified layers? Well, the mousse would have liked it, but love your photos and write-up. Cool that you figured it out without the guru...knw you could :)


Blogger Karen Baking Soda said ... (8/29/2007 3:35 PM) : 

I'm afraid I will be known as the Caramel Geek forever, leaving everyone notes on how gorgeous their caramel sorry but yours looks er well gorgeous!

Honey, you baked an upside down milk chocolate caramel tart and you did great!


Blogger Inne said ... (8/29/2007 4:14 PM) : 

Looks utterly delicious Lis, despite all your trouble. And at least you liked the end result so it was all worth it. I had the same problem with my caramel seizing up, but just kept on stirring over a low heat and it came together nicely.


Blogger Alpineberry Mary said ... (8/29/2007 4:22 PM) : 

Your tart is goo-licious!


Blogger MyKitchenInHalfCups said ... (8/29/2007 5:29 PM) : 

94 are we now, I was afreard to count, not sure I can count that high.
Funny but some how your "goo" manages to look totally enticing, it's just begging me to put my finger in for a good lick!
All that caramel seizing gave my heart pause but stirring seemed to smooth everything out and oh my goodness how hard not to just sit on the floor with the pan and spoon away!
I did let my tart bake an extra 5 minutes and it was firm then.


Blogger Amanda at Little Foodies said ... (8/29/2007 5:42 PM) : 

You're always good for a giggle!

Lovely looking gooey caramel and as others have said that's how caramel is supposed to be. I definitely agree it would be good over ice cream


Blogger Nazca said ... (8/29/2007 6:42 PM) : 

Amateurish attempt at caramel that ;-) At least mine was supposed to be runny... see, it says it right there in my title :-P

This was the quickest DB challenge product to go at work too - so it obviously worked a treat, set or not :-)

Go gooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!


Blogger Anh said ... (8/29/2007 7:24 PM) : 

oh Lis you made me laugh again! Love your attitude to baking and chalenge! And i love the smooth overlowing caramel!


Blogger Wendy said ... (8/29/2007 7:59 PM) : 

Your tart looks so gooey and delicious!! Sweet. Wendy


Blogger Cusinero Ge said ... (8/29/2007 10:53 PM) : 

That looks absolutely DIVINE! Mmmm...


Blogger Barbara said ... (8/29/2007 10:59 PM) : 

That caramel goo looks delicious.


Blogger Sara said ... (8/30/2007 12:10 AM) : 

Oooh look how yummy and gooey that looks. The colors are so great.


Blogger Amy said ... (8/30/2007 2:14 AM) : 

Mmm that caramel goo looks delicious, I want to lick it off my screen. :D


Blogger KJ said ... (8/30/2007 3:44 AM) : 

I would dearly love to stick my (clean, of course) finger in the big pile of decadent gooeyness.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/30/2007 4:15 AM) : 

Your tart looks overly decadent with all this oozing caramel...

Love xxx
- fanny


Blogger Unknown said ... (8/30/2007 10:56 AM) : 

Looks incredible Lis I'm all for goo, goo and more goo. I'm going to have to give this a go now that lil' miss is back to school I think I really missed out on this one!


Blogger Unknown said ... (8/30/2007 3:18 PM) : 

Looks sticky and delicious to me....


Blogger Connie said ... (8/30/2007 5:14 PM) : 

wow! gooey gooey! that just looks soooo good


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/30/2007 6:51 PM) : 

mmmm....gooey goodness. i enjoyed mine a little too much also!


Blogger Andrea said ... (8/30/2007 10:02 PM) : 

I love reading your posts, they always brighten my day and make me laugh! That gooey caramel looks sinful...


Blogger monica said ... (8/30/2007 10:19 PM) : 

mmm but your caramel looks so scrumptious! great job anyhow, lis!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8/31/2007 1:47 AM) : 

Your tart isn't runny. It makes it own delicious sauce! That's what I decided when I saw my own runny caramel layer. We're on the cutting edge, that all!


Blogger Lis said ... (8/31/2007 5:45 AM) : 

Well unfortunately, I didn't get a chance to check comments until right now - and with 42 of them, I'm just going to give a great big collective HUG! and say, Thanks guys - talk about making someone feel good! =)


PS - Sher.. we so totally rock the cutting edge of baking. Although I have a feeling Mark will take all the credit. :P


Blogger marias23 said ... (8/31/2007 8:08 AM) : 

There's so much ooeey gooeey-ness going on! Love your tart sculpture! *winks*


Blogger Jenny said ... (8/31/2007 1:05 PM) : 

You know, it won't be long before YOU are someone's baking Guru! (Hey! Get back here - I didn't say you had to do it today! hehehe)
Beautiful goo, btw!


Blogger eatme_delicious said ... (8/31/2007 6:53 PM) : 

I love how you wrote about your experience making this tart! Looks delicious.


Blogger Jerry said ... (9/01/2007 1:47 PM) : 

Oh my god the caramel! I would so die if that was mine!


Blogger Chris said ... (9/01/2007 4:36 PM) : 

I think I am about to bust a gut...I am sitting her - stuffed up, laughing & laughing! Your caramel? It would sure smooth my sore throat right now...:)


Blogger Heather said ... (9/01/2007 6:19 PM) : 

while it sounds like the goo was still a great treat, you should try this again.
It looks like something I would like to eat.


Blogger Valentina said ... (9/02/2007 4:02 PM) : 

Oh Lis, I did miss your lovely narratives. You just have the gift of the garb.You cracked me up. i am glad that the final result was good!


Blogger Unknown said ... (9/02/2007 11:31 PM) : 

That looks really appealing! I am amazed of how these DB girls work! Fantastic!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9/04/2007 12:43 PM) : 

Wow... that looks amazing. I'd love to try that. In fact, I'd love to join the Daring Bakers... is that OK or is it a more closed club kind of deal?


Blogger Dolores said ... (9/04/2007 6:07 PM) : 

Congratulations Lis... to the extent it's possible to turn melted sugar into something sinful enough to warrant an "X" rating (for decadent desserts) you've done it!


Blogger Lis said ... (9/06/2007 11:09 PM) : 

Emiglia - email me at =)



Blogger breadchick said ... (9/07/2007 12:53 PM) : 


I love your gooey mess o chocolate. A perfect kid's treat *especially for us adult kids!!



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