Grapefruit and white chocolate tart
Between busy schedules and sticking to trusted recipes for a flop-free dessert offerings, finding time for baking experiments is a rare treat. But a weekend to myself, with my hubby off on familial visits and only the cats left to stare at me disdainfully, I was treated to just that.
Every baking success starts with some basic inspiration, and this I found in the forgotten grapefruits sitting in the fruit bowl (bought with noble and healthy intentions) and the blowtorch which I had received as a birthday gift (and am embarrassed to admit, was yet to use almost a year later).
From there my mind leaped to a zingy grapefruit curd with torched meringue. For a little more interest, I thought a creamy and sweet white chocolate ganache would be a good accompaniment, and to hold it all together… who doesn’t love a buttery biscuit base?
The result made this sweet tooth very happy – sweet, tart and all kinds of delicious!
For the base:
- 1 packet biscuits (I like a mixture of Marie and Tennis biscuits)
- 125g butter
For the ganache:
- 80g white chocolate
- ⅓ cup cream
For the grapefruit curd:
- Zest and juice from 1 large grapefruit
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2T cornstarch
- 1T butter
For the meringue:
- 3 egg whites
- ¾ cup caster sugar
- Crush the biscuits in a food processor, melt the butter and combine (the mixture should hold together when patted down with a spoon)
- Pour the biscuit mixture into a deep 20cm springform tin / silicon mould and press down to create an even base with sides 4-5cm high. Place in the fridge to chill.
- Slowly heat the cream in a saucepan on low (do not boil).
- Break the chocolate into blocks and place in a microwave safe bowl. Melt the chocolate in the microwave in 10s bursts, stirring in between to make sure it doesn’t burn.
- Add the cream to the white chocolate and mix until smooth.
- Pour the ganache into the tart shell and return to the fridge to set.
- For the grapefruit curd, separate 6 eggs (put the whites aside for the meringue) and add the grapefruit zest to the yolks
- Mix together the sugar, salt and cornstarch
- Whisk in the grapefruit juice and bring to the boil, whisking occasionally, and allow to boil for 2 mins
- Add half the grapefruit mixture to the egg yolks and whisk to temper the yolks (this will stop the yolks being cooked by the heat of the mixture)
- Add the egg mixture back to the saucepan and bring back to the boil for 5mins (until thickened)
- Remove from heat and whisk in the butter
- Pour into a shallow dish and cover with cling wrap that touches the surface of the curd to prevent a skin from forming
- Allow to cool for 30 mins before pouring into the tart shell and allowing to set completely in the fridge (2-3 hours should do it)
- Once the tart has set, whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks and slowly add the sugar until wll combined (remember you only need 3 – to avoid wasting the rest, you can make double the meringue recipe and bake the leftover meringue in the oven for 1hr at 100 degrees)
- Using a piping bag, pipe the meringue on top of the tart (I chose irregular dots, starting with larger ones and filling in the gaps with smaller ones until the surface of the curd was covered – but don’t let my decisions stop you getting creative!)
- Using a blowtorch, caramelise the meringue
- Enjoy with a good cup of tea and a few lucky friends (just smugly alone on the couch watching your favourite “guilty pleasure” series)