This tart with coffee custard is for true lovers of bold flavors. The dark cocoa pastry is crisp and not too sweet compared to the strong flavor of the coffee cream. The cream is a type of a custard suitable for baking (I modified slightly the original recipe of Maestro Massari) which means it contains not many eggs. The addition of a few eggs prevents the excessive rising and then falling of the cream during baking. The taste of coffee is strongly pronounced thanks to the use of ground coffee powder instead of instant coffee. The cream is velvety and sweet – perfect for a friable and not too sandy crust.
- 230 g all-purpose flour
- 30 g dark cocoa powder
- 90 g white sugar
- 120 g butter (I used unsulted butter made by Lurpak)
- 1 egg
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 500 ml milk
- 3 – 4 tsp ground coffee (I used ground coffee for espresso)
- 120 g whole eggs at room temperature (about 2 big eggs)
- 65 g corn starch
- 200 g (or less) white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Minimum 30 minutes waiting time.
Instructions for dark cocoa crust
Place flour, dark cocoa powder, salt, sugar and cold butter in a blender with blade attachments and blend until you get mixture similar to sand. Otherwise grate your cold butter on a grater with large holes and incorporate it with your finger tips into flour-cocoa mixture.
Add egg and vanilla and work briefly until all the ingredients are well blended. Wrap in plastic wrap, or if you try to save the World from the futile plastic waste, into a small container with a lid, and place the dough in the refrigerator for half an hour minimum. I put it in the fridge for whole night.
Instructions for coffee custard
In a bowl suitable for cooking over water bath whisk eggs, cornstarch and sugar and put aside.
Meanwhile, heat half a liter of milk with 3 – 4 teaspoons of ground coffee. The amount of teaspoons depends on your personal taste and the type of coffee you are using. Add less coffee in case you want your coffee custard with a less bold flavor.
As soon as the milk is about to reach the boiling point, turn off the heat. Pass it through a fine sieve into the egg mixture to remove almost all the ground coffee powder (don’t worry if it some of it passes through the sieve). Stir and place the bowl over a container full of boiling water to cook the custard over the water bath.
I remind you that the container with the egg mixture must not touch the surface of the boiling water. At the beginning stir often to ensure that there are no lumbs and towards the end of cooking stir continuously using the whisk. Cook over the water bath until the cream becomes thick and shiny. It takes some time so be patient.
If you are having some hard times to get your cream thick that’s because it doesn’t get enough temperature. That happens when the bowl that you are using is too small and there is not enough heat in the bottom or because it is too wide and the cream surface is too big to get hot evenly. If you have this problem just place a lid over the bowl with the mixture for 15 – 30 seconds for a couple of times. That will rise the temperature of the cream and it will get thick but be careful this method can cause lumps so remember to whisk every time.
This type of cream should be cool down quickly to make sure no lumps appear. Prepare a container full of lukewarm water (to avoid thermal shock) which then you will replace by very cold water. To make the job easier, I simply used the kitchen sink filled with water.
Move the bowl in lukewarm water and let it rest for a couple of minutes. Mix and only now add the vanilla extract. Change the cooling water into very cold water and let your custard rest until it is completely cold. Meanwhile, remember to cover the surface of the cream with the plastic wrap to avoid creating the dense part.
This coffee custard should be used immediately, otherwise it should be stored in the refrigerator and used during the same day.
Instructions for coffee custard pie
Remove the pastry from the refrigerator and let it rest at room temperature for 10 minutes. If you kept the dough in the refrigerator all night like me, you’ll propably have to knead it a couple of times to make it softer. Cut a third of pastry and set aside.
Meanwhile, roll out the dough to a thickness of about 3 mm, helping yourslef with a some flour. Roll the pastry over the rolling pin and move over a round tart pan about 22 cm wide. Use your fingertips to make it adhere to the pan and cut the excess dough.
Prick the bottom with a fork and add your coffee custard.
Roll out the rest of the remaining dough and form long strips to create a decorative grid.
Use the remaining pastry to decorate the rim and then bake in the preheated oven at 180 °C. First cook in the lower part of the oven for 20 minutes, then move the pan to the middle shelf and continue cooking for another 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let it cool completely before serving.
lot of love. B.
p.s. If you like bold coffee flavors you should also try my: Coffee and dark chocolate cheesecake