The melding of Mexican flavors in this chocolate, cinnamon, and coffee tart is something, once experienced, that you just can’t get outta your mind.
Years ago in Mexico City, I tasted a tart like this and I’ve thought about it ever since. One of the New World foods, chocolate has always been a favorite in Mexico (and everywhere else, for that matter), especially when it’s paired with cinnamon and coffee. Try this combination of true Mexican flavors.–Joanne Weir
LC JUST CAN’T GET IT OUTTA YOUR MIND NOTE
Ever tasted something that haunts you? You know, when you just can’t get it outta your mind? We have. So has Joanne Weir, who created this recipe as a result of said haunting. Tell us, what haunts you? Let us know in a comment below.
Chocolate, Cinnamon, and Coffee Tart
- 9-inch tart pan, preferably with removable bottom; pie weights or dried beans
For the tart crust
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 10 tablespoons (5 ounces) unsalted butter cut into 12 pieces and out of the refrigerator for 15 minutes
- 1 tablespoon cold water or more if needed
For the tart filling
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into 8 pieces
- 1/3 cup dark corn syrup
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons Kahlua or brandy
- 2 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Make the tart crust
- In a food processor, mix the flour, sugar, and salt with a few pulses. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles cornmeal. Add the water, adding a little more as needed, until the ingredients are blended and hold together if you press them. Gather the pastry dough into a ball, flatten it into a 6-inch disk, and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Press the pastry dough evenly into the bottom and 1 inch up the sides of a 9-inch tart pan. Place the pastry-lined tart pan in the freezer for 30 minutes.
- Line the pastry with parchment paper and scatter 1 cup dried beans or pie weights onto the parchment. Bake the tart crust until the top edges are light golden, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the parchment and weights, reduce the oven temperature to 375°F (190°C), and continue to bake until the pastry is light golden, 10 to 15 minutes more. Let cool.
Make the tart filling
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Place the pine nuts in a dry skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring, until golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.
- In a double boiler over medium-high heat, warm the chocolate and butter, stirring almost constantly, until melted and smooth.
- In another saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together the corn syrup and granulated sugar and bring to a boil. Pour this into the melted chocolate mixture and stir to combine.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the Kahlua, espresso powder, and cinnamon. Place the eggs in a large bowl and whisk until foamy. Add the Kahlua mixture and whisk until well combined. Add the chocolate mixture and whisk until thoroughly incorporated. Stir in the toasted pine nuts.
- Pour the filling into the prebaked tart shell and bake until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Let the tart cool on a wire rack for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, whip the cream to soft peaks. Gently fold in 1 tablespoon confections’ sugar and vanilla.
- Cut the tart into slices, dust with the remaining confectioners’ sugar, and serve with a dollop of whipped cream.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
I love chocolate and the flavors of Mexican chocolate. This chocolate, cinnamon, and coffee tart has a custard-like filling that comes together really quickly. I liked the flavor. The coffee isn’t overwhelming and it’s rather lovely with the pine nuts. As with any pie or tart, you need to make the dough first and then make the filling. The dough is easy to handle. You can initially roll the dough a bit before fitting it in to make things easier, and then press it into the pan. You can also take a flat small cup and press down all around to make sure it’s even. Rather than using a double boiler, you could melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave. If I made this again, I would try almonds or pecans and maybe even throw in a pinch of chipotle chile powder.
Originally published July 4, 2004