It’s Wednesday. By my reckoning, Wednesday evening is definitely a cause for celebration because it’s all downhill from here! The weekend’s a-coming, and there ain’t nothing that can stop it
If you, like me, feel that Wednesday is the perfect time for a little indulgence, then please let me introduce you to your new best friend.
This is the ultimate in totally delicious, fancy/not fancy cooking. This looks like a beautiful, elegant chocolate tart, but in actual fact, it’s a ridiculously simple, one-bowl brownie batter.
Sure, making salted caramel can be a little intimidating at first, but it’s really not a big deal. You melt some sugar, cook it until amber and then stir in some butter, cream and salt. It’s a Wednesday indulgence!
It’s actually amazing what a fluted tart tin will do for any simple brownie or cake. All of a sudden you go from squares – great for snacks, a little played out – to slim, elegant wedges of what looks to be a fancy french treat.
So whether you need something to impress for a little weeknight pick-me-up dinner party (which are totally fun, you should do that) or you just want to bring some fancy cake to your sitting in front of the TV/pyjamas routine (also totally valid) this recipe has got your back!
- 5 oz (150g) dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
- 1 stick (115g) butter
- 2 eggs
- Splash of vanilla extract
- ½ cup (115g) caster sugar
- ⅓ cup (40g) plain flour
- Pinch of baking powder
- 1 cup (225g) caster sugar
- ¾ stick (75g) butter
- ½ cup (125ml) cream
- 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
- Vanilla ice cream (or coffee ice cream would be great)
- To make the brownie, preheat the oven to 160C and spray a 23cm loose-based tart tin with non-stick spray. If you don’t have a tart tin, any similar size baking dish will be fine.
- Place the chocolate and butter into a microwave safe bowl, and microwave in 20 second bursts until melted, stirring well after each time.
- When the chocolate is melted, add all the remaining ingredients and stir together vigorously with a wooden spoon. The mixture should go from looking lumpy and kind of greasy to looking smooth and silky and shiny.
- Scrape the batter into the pan and bake for 25 minutes. Leave to cool in the tin on a wire rack.
- While the tart is baking, make the caramel. Place the sugar into a heavy-based saucepan with a splash of water, and place over a medium heat. Do not stir.
- Heat the mixture until the sugar melts and begins to boil. If there are dry patches in the pan, you can tilt and swirl the pan gently to mix, but do not stir the mixture and be very careful, as it is super hot.
- Cook the sugar until it turns from clear to golden to amber and starts to smell caramelly and toasted.
- Once this stage is reached, remove the pan from the heat. Carefully add the butter, and stir gently. The pan will bubble up and hiss at you, but just relax and let it do its thing and calm down. Then, stir in the cream and keep stirring gently until everything is incorporated.
- Place the pan back on the heat just for a minute, to re-melt everything if needed, and then add in the salt and set it aside to cool down to warm. It will seem very liquid, but it thickens as it cools.
- When you’re ready to serve, slice up the tart, and top it with a scoop of ice cream, and as much salted caramel as your heart desires.