- 1 3/4 cups of flour
- 1/3 cup of cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup of powdered sugar
- 1 pinch salt
- 1/2 cup of butter, cut into cubes and chilled
- 3 egg yolks
- 8 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 1 1/2 cups of heavy whipping cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups of milk
- 2 cups good quality milk chocolate, chopped
- 2 cups of sugar
- 3 1/2 tbsp of water
- For the pastry: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Combine flour, cocoa, powdered sugar and salt in a food processor and process to combine.
- Then add the butter and blitz just until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add the egg yolks and process briefly until mixture begins to form lumps.
- Press into the base of a deep 9-inch round fluted tart pan with a removable base and chill for 30 minutes.
- Prick well with a fork, cover with parchment paper, add baking beans and then bake in the oven for 20 minutes, remove the baking beans and parchment paper, and bake for another 5 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges.
- Reduce the heat to 300 degrees for the next step.
- For the filling: Beat the egg yolks and sugar until pale and creamy.
- Combine the cream, milk and vanilla in a small saucepan and heat to a simmer.
- Remove from the heat, add the chocolate and stir until smooth. Slowly add the chocolate mixture to the egg yolks, stirring until combined. Pour into the pastry base.
- Bake at 300 degrees for 50 minutes or until just set.
- Cool in the pan on a wire rack before chilling for at least 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, make the spun sugar: Bring the sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Cook until mixture turns into a pale amber in color, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let the syrup cool until slightly thickened.
- Secure two wooden spoons over the edge of a countertop or plastic box and using 2 forks, or a whisk that has had the prongs cut off, dip the ends into the caramel.
- From about 2 feet above the spoon handles, move back and forth like a pendulum in long arcs, allowing strands of caramel to fall in thin threads over the handles.
- Immediately gather strands into a loose nest. Use immediately.
- To finish: Sift the top of the tart with sugar, and then use a blowtorch to melt and caramelize the sugar to form a crust. Serve immediately with the spun sugar nest on top.
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