A buttery, crumbly chocolate tart crust that goes perfectly with any filling. This is one of my most used crust recipes when it comes to making a sweet tart.
This chocolate tart crust keeps all of the crispy texture and buttery flavor of the master tart crust but adds in a hint of cocoa powder for deep chocolate flavor. I love making this with a chocolate-y filling like this salted caramel chocolate tart but literally it’s great for any kind of filling.
CHOCOLATE TART INGREDIENTS
You will need butter, flour, cocoa powder, granulated sugar, egg, vanilla extract and a pinch of salt. That sounds simple doesn’t it?
Let’s talk about butter. The first tip is to use really cold butter as they will yield a crispy and hold-the-shape finished crust. I’ve tried making a tart crust using melted butter but it did not turn out the way I expected.
The next tip is egg. I found that a whole egg per 9-inch tart crust is a perfect ratio. However, you can substitute with one egg yolk and 2-3 teaspoons of milk/cream. Egg yolk will enrich the flavor and the structure of tart dough. A little milk or cream will help the dough more easier to work with.
PREBAKED CRUST AND FULLY BAKED CRUST
Pre-baking, Par-baking or blind baking, is a process in which tart dough is placed into its pan and baked in the oven before adding filling. Using some pie weights, dry beans or uncooked rice will help weight down the dough so it can keep its shape during baking time. After pre-baking the crust, you can add the filling then bake until it’s set.
For a fully baked crust, the filling is added after the crust is baked and cool completely. There is no re-bake process involved once the crust is done being baked. Fully baked crust is mostly applied to recipes in which the filling is cooked separately from the crust, coconut cream pie is an example. Depending on the recipe, you may need a pre baked or fully baked crust that calls for shorter or longer baking time.
Chocolate Tart Crust
- 1 1/4 cups (238g) all-purpose flour
- 4 tablespoons (50g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- A pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick/113 g) cold unsalted butter cut into small cubes
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Prepare the dough: Place the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, and salt in a food processor and pulse for a few seconds until combined. Then add butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. You can use a pastry cutter if you don’t have a food process on hand. Add the egg and vanilla, and process until the dough starts to form large clumps.
- Transfer the pie dough to a floured work surface and form into a ball. The dough should come together easily and should not feel overly sticky. Flatten ball slightly with your floured hands to form a thick disc. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.
- Take dough out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter for a few minutes until slightly softened. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to a thickness of about 1/8-inch. Start from the center of the disc and work your way out in all directions, turning and flouring the dough with your hands as you go. Make sure it doesn’t stick to the surface.
- Press the dough gently into the tart pan , trimming away any excess. Poke 8-10 holes all over the dough with a fork about 8-10 times. This helps prevent the crust from bubbling up and not baking flat on the bottom. Place the pan with the crust in it back into the fridge for 15-30 minutes as this will help prevent shrinkage.
- To bake the dough: Preheat oven to 350F/180C and place the rack in the center.
- Press parchment paper and fill with pie weights (or dried beans or uncooked rice). Bake crust for 15 minutes, then remove from oven and transfer the crust to a wire rack. Remove weights and parchment paper.
- For a prebaked crust, bake for 5 more minutes then add filling and proceed with your recipe. For a fully baked crust, bake for 10 minutes then transfer a wire rack and let it cool completely.