Caramel and Chocolate Tartlets

Quick Facts:

serves 8-12

Ingredients:

Tartlets:
24 mini tartlet shells (I used Clearbrook Farms)
4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
½ cup heavy cream
a handful of toasted, salted pecans
½ cup caramel sauce, recipe follows (or you can use prepared caramel sauce)
sweetened whipped cream for garnish
sea salt with espellete, for garnish


Caramel:
1 cup sugar
¼ cup water
¼ cup heavy cream, warmed
pinch salt
½ teaspoon vanilla

Directions:

Tartlets:
1. Heat cream in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan over medium-high heat until it simmers.
2. Remove from heat. Add chocolate stir until partially melted. Let stand for 15-20 minutes to continue melting chocolate.
3. Stir mixture again until smooth and chocolate sauce is smooth. Let cool.
4. Once a bit cool pour chocolate ganache into cooled, cooked tartlets.
5. Chill until firm. Top with caramel sauce and a piece of pecan. Chill until ready to serve.
6. Garnish with whipped cream and sea salt with espellete.

Caramel:
1. Heat a heavy medium saucepan (all clad or equivalent) and put the sugar in an even layer in the bottom of the pan.
2. Drizzle the water completely around the sides of the pan.
3. With the heat at medium, let the sugar dissolve. Cook until the sugar turn a nice dark caramel color. Remove from the heat. Drizzle ½ the sugar mixture onto a silpat. Carefully pour in the warm cream into the remaining sugar in the pan, the mixture will sputter.
4. Stir until any hard caramel pieces are smooth and incorporated. If necessary gently reheat.

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