By Jen Inglis
We’re sending some rays of sunshine and chocolate as a defence against this blue January week! Positivity is tricky enough at this time of year but it's been even more of a struggle with endlessly depressing news, restrictions and winter storms. This is the week things improve though as vaccines pick up pace, Trump is officially out and we share this delightfully sweet (vegan) treat!
Blueberry and Chocolate Tarte au Soleil
It may look like you need proper pastry skills for this one, but apart from a little fiddly section when twisting the rays, this recipe is really, really simple and great for the weekend if you're looking for a kid-friendly activity. It's also adaptable as you can go wild with the fillings and dips and make one large or individual tarts.
I was really looking forward to weekend brunch when choosing my blueberry and chocolate combination but savoury versions are also delicious. The original plan was roast tomato and tapenade! The puff pastry used is shop-bought (sorry), and while it is possible to make a good vegan puff at home with some of the newer vegan butter products *cough naturli block *cough, it's quite expensive and I don't think any better really than using Bells or Jus-rol (the puff pastry from these brands is suitable for vegans so if you're using another then please check the ingredients).
And if you're keen to do your own then please get rolling and send us pics! Tag any of your creations on social media with @steampunkcoffee so we can see them and share!
150 g blueberries,
Squeeze of lemon,
Heat all compote ingredients for 20 minutes till combined and slightly thickened. Allow to cool before using.
500g puff pastry split into 2 blocks
Soya milk for glazing
Icing sugar for dusting
Chocolate dipping sauce
1 tin coconut milk
30ml maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
200g vegan chocolate or chocolate chips
Pans For compote and sauce
Tarte au soleil
Roll 2 circles of pastry of equal size and place one on baking parchment on the tray. Spoon compote into centre and spread it leaving a ½ inch gap around the edge. Use the pastry brush to add a thin layer of water to the gap and place the other circle on top. Press gently around the edge so that the whole tart is sealed. Then place in the fridge for half an hour because the pastry will be much easier to work once its chilled and rested.
Any leftover scraps of pastry can be spread with filling, layered and roughly twisted then baked for 15 minutes into pastry straws. Marmite works really well but you could use jam or pesto, cream cheese, sriracha or anything else that’s spreadable!
Back to pastry
Place a glass, rim down, in the centre of the circle and then using the knife cut the circle into quarters starting from the glass rim and out to the edge. Then cut 3 equal slices in each quarter and then cut these slices in half again starting 1 inch from the glass rim for these final cuts. You should end up with 24 equal segments. Gently twist each segment 2 or 3 times before pressing flat onto parchment again at the edge. You can twist each segment in alternate directions to vary the pattern or not if you prefer. Once every segment is twisted, glaze with soya milk and bake for 20-25 minutes at 180 degrees.
Heat and whisk coconut milk, maple syrup and sugar till just coming to boil then remove from heat and mix in rest of ingredients till chocolate is completely melted. Use straight away as warm sauce or cool to room temperature and it will be slightly thicker.
Allow tart to cool slightly, dust with icing sugar and serve with your chocolate sauce. Gorgeous as quick brunch option or for a cosy afternoon coffee-break!