Chocolate Tart In A Secret Garden (I)

Chocolate Tart

Chocolate Tart 2

It is the time of the year again to celebrate that very day two years ago when I had the greatest pain of my life. When the little bundle of joy entered my life.

Being a mum of one (only – phew!) gives me that little bit more time to think about what I can do to make the little one happy. I love baking cakes and that’s a bonus for me, but I always land myself into trouble when I decide to try out very complicated recipes. First of all, I always do a trial run of new recipes and that takes time (from my precious sleep at night). And then of course, if it doesn’t turn out well, I will think about ways to improve further. That takes brain cells and more time from my sleep. Recalling what I did last year, I spent so much time and effort to make so many piggy fondant cakes it was crazy. The cake was very sweet too, all thanks to the layers of fondant. This year, I thought of doing the same cake again – I can imagine the boy squealing with joy if he sees the cake now that he’s older and knows a lot more – but that would be boring and cliche (and much too tiring too).

Something different means trying out something other than a cake, and a tart sounds like an interesting idea. I’ve never made a tart before, so I did feel apprehensive about making the pastry from scratch. Nevertheless, it was worth a try. I think the result was very pleasing and authentic (oh well, at least I tried to make it into a garden). Just this week, I am already thinking about how to improve on this recipe to make it even better for the bake on the actual day (raspberry and chocolate tart recipe coming up!) but for now, here’s what I have to share with everyone – the result from my trial run. I hope you’ll like it as much as I do!

Chocolate Tart 3

Ingredients: (Tart Pastry)

  • Egg yolk: 3
  • Vanilla seeds: from 1 pod
  • Plain flour: 250g
  • Icing sugar: 50g
  • Unsalted butter: 125g

Ingredients: (Chocolate Filling)

  • Heavy cream: 500ml
  • Milo powder: 1 heaped tbsp
  • Egg: 2
  • Dark chocolate (70% cocoa, optional): 400g, chopped
  • Pistachio nut: 200g, roughly chopped
  • Gooseberry: 10, with leaves
  • Vanilla ice-cream (optional): 1 pint

Method: (Tart Pastry)

  1. Beat egg yolks and vanilla seeds in a mixer till light and creamy.
  2. Sieve plain flour and icing sugar into a mixing bowl.
  3. Rub butter into flour mixture.
  4. Gently mix egg mixture into flour mixture. Knead to form dough.
  5. Place in cling wrap and chill for 1 hr.
  6. Preheat oven at 180 degrees Celsius.
  7. Remove dough from fridge. Leave to room temperature.
  8. Roll out to 3mm thick. Line a 25-cm pastry tin with pastry dough, carefully kneading dough into sides of tin and pushing the dough upwards till a few mm above the tin.
  9. Blind bake with baking paper and rice placed over the top of the pastry for 12min.
  10. Remove blind bake. Bake for another 10min till golden brown.
  11. Leave to cool for 10 min.

Method: (Chocolate Filling)

  1. Preheat oven at 150 degree Celsius.
  2. Bring to boil heavy cream and milo powder. Remove from heat.
  3. Beat eggs with hand. Slowly stir into heavy cream till mixed.
  4. Use a water bath to melt dark chocolate till smooth and creamy.
  5. Pour cream mixture into melted chocolate. Stir together till smooth.
  6. Stand pastry tart on a baking tray.
  7. Pour chocolate mixture into tart till a few mm away from rim.
  8. Bake 25min till set. Leave to cool for 10min.
  9. Garnish with chopped pistachio and gooseberries.
  10. Serve warm with vanilla ice-cream.

Chocolate Tart 4


  • Work quickly to get dough lined up in the pastry tin as the butter melts quickly at room temperature as well as from our body temperature from the contact with our fingers.


  • This recipe was kindly adapted from Great British Chefs’ ‘Bitter chocolate and malt tart.
  • It is not very usual to bake the filling of a tart; most other recipes chill the chocolate filling to set it, which is what I prefer as well. This recipe is exactly what I am going to share with everyone in part (II) of my chocolate tart series later on. Watch out for it!

1 25-cm tart (about 8 dessert slices)

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