Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Queen of Hearts Tarts

here's what i'm thinkin'

why wasn't there MORE broo ha ha about
Alice in Wonderland?

it came and went too fast
not that i loved the story
because i really didn't
my eyes lit up
and then
teared up
at the design and beauty
of this film
and i keep hoping
for the occasion
to recreate
some of its amazing elements

is not that day
but i think these tarts are fun
representing the
smoldering of the Red Queen's dark heart
and the
flame of her hair
Queen of Hearts Tart
1 recipe italian meringue dyed red
strawberry, raspberry, mixed berry, or apricot jam
chocolate pastry cream (recipe follows)
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 tsp cornstarch
pinch salt
1 Tbs dark rum or 1 tsp vanilla
2 cups milk
5 oz bittersweet chocolate-chopped or chipped
1 Tbs unsalted butter
Roll out dough and place into tart or tartlet pans as directed.  Blind bake until completely done.  Let cool.   Meanwhile, make the pastry cream.
Whisk together the sugar, salt, egg yolks and cornstarch until light yellow. Whisk in the rum or vanilla. Scald the milk in a saucepan, then temper the egg mixture, whisking as you add the milk.  Return to saucepan and low heat. Cook over low heat until it begins to thicken and just starts to bubble a not let it simmer or boil.  Pour through sieve into a clean bowl. Add chocolate and butter and stir to melt and combine.  Let cool a bit.
Spoon and spread a thin layer of jam in the bottom of the tart shell. Top with chocolate pastry cream.  Whip up meringue and top the tart or tartlets in design of your choice.  Pop in a 350 oven and bake until meringue begins to firm up, but does not brown....note: if you are making this as a non-queen of hearts tart, keep the meringue it's natural color and let it bake away until brown or use a torch to color as you please. Chill before serving


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