recipe, sweet

Chocolate and Banana Tart


This deliciously warm dessert is simply decadent… a rich and creamy ganache envelops caramelized banana slices, and sits to rest in a perfectly thin but crispy-sweet crust

This recipe deviates slightly from the original, which was concocted by famous French pastry chef Pierre HermΓ©. This chef was dubbed by Vogue magazine as the “Picasso of Pastry,” and given his world-wide recognition for his uniquely flavoured macarons, I can understand why!

Like his daring macarons, Chef HermΓ© created a really extravagant chocolate tart recipe. Aside from chocolate, he used habanero pepper, black pepper, and rum-soaked raisins. How intriguing! 

But, from what you readers have told me, very few of us actually want to make a chocolate tart with some crazy ingredients (ie habanero pepper) when we are at home.  So I chose to skip those ingredients and stick with a classic French chocolate tart, with the homey-comfort of caramelized bananas.


So, allow me to present to you my chocolate banana tart, but with Chef Pierre HermΓ©’s ganache. Although less daring, it is MUCH more practical, easy to do, and will appease many more palates.

Chocolate Banana Tart

Ingredients:

Crust
– 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
– 1 and 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
– pinch of salt
– 9 tbsp unsalted butter
– 1 large egg

Caramelized bananas
– 2 bananas
– juice of 1/2 lemon
– 2 tbsp butter, unsalted
– 4 tbsp granulated sugar

Ganache
–  5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped roughly
– 4 ounces unsalted butter, cut roughly into 8 pieces
– 1 egg and 3 egg yolks, room temperature
– 2 tbsp sugar

Directions:

For the pastry

1. sift together the sugar, flour, and salt. Cut in the butter and use your hands to mix it. It will look really crumbly, but that’s okay! 

2. Add your egg, and either pulse in your food processor or use a hand mixer to stir everything together. It will still look very crumbly, but stop mixing when it forms a ball when you squeeze some of the mixture together in your hands.

3. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least one hour (this allows the gluten to change consistency, making your dough easier to handle)

4. When ready to make the tart, roll our half the dough with a rolling pin on a floured surface. It’s best to let your dough sit for about 5-10 minutes before you start rolling, or it will go crumbly on you. Line a greased 9 inch tart pan with half the dough.

5. Preheat oven to 375F, and bake the dough for 15 minutes (the recipe also suggests using pie weights, but I didn’t need them). Remove from heat immediately, and let cool.

Caramelized Bananas

6. Slice the bananas into 1/8 inch thick rounds (you can estimate!). Toss them in the lemon juice.

7. Melt the butter in a large saute pan (medium-high heat), and wait until the butter starts bubbling. 

8. Add the bananas into the pan one-by-one, spacing them out to not crowd the pan (it’s okay if you do it in two batches if you need to). Sprinkle the sugar over top.

9. Reduce heat slightly, and wait for the undersides to begin caramelizing! Flip them over, and caramelize the other side too. Tranfer them to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet or plate.

10. Line them inside the baked crust, saving a couple to place on top for decoration if you like.

Chocolate Ganache

11. Melt the chocolate and butter in a double-boiler (or put a bowl in a pot of water, without having the bowl touch the water). Allow it to cool.

12. Meanwhile, stir together your egg, egg yolks, and sugar in a bowl

13. When your chocolate mixture has cooled (if you have a candy thermometer, it should read 104F), add it to your egg mixture and stir quickly (you don’t want the chocolate to cook your eggs!)

14. When the mixture is shiny and smooth, pour it over your crust and bananas. Top with decorative bananas if you wish. 

15. Bake at 375F for exactly 11 minutes, then allow it to cool slightly before serving. 

This tart is good right from the oven, later in the day, or the next morning! πŸ™‚

Store at room temperature, covered delicately with a cloth.