I thought I used too much salted caramel sauce for these tarts. I used 3/4 tablespoon for each tart! Sheer madness, thinking back. Quite overwhelmed by the salty sweet taste.
However, my taste testers think they are really quite nice.
Once again, I conclude, anything salty and sweet will win hands down with this group of taste testers. :)
Salted caramel cheese tart
Pâte Sucrée (yields 3 x 10 1/2 inches or 4 x 8 inches crust; from Pierre Herme)
- 300 grams unsalted butter, softened but cool
- 190 grams icing sugar
- 60 grams almond meal
- seeds from 1 vanilla bean
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 500 grams all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- In a mixing bowl, beat butter with icing sugar until smooth and creamy.
- Add in seeds from vanilla bean and beat for a minute.
- Add in eggs, one at at time, making sure each is incorporated well.
- Sift flour with salt and almond meal.
- Turn mixer on low and add in dry ingredients gradually. Once all is poured in, let the mixer run for 10 seconds then stop. Scrape down sides of the bowl.
- Divide dough into desired portion. Roll into a ball and wrap with cling wrap. Press into a disc shape. Place in refrigerator overnight.
- When ready to make, remove the portion you require from the fridge. I used 290 grams for 10 tarts. On a well floured board, roll out the dough to desired shape. I made mini tarts using the metallic moulds used for making egg tarts. I rolled out the dough and used a cup to cut the dough into circles before pressing the dough lightly into the tart moulds.
- Place parchment paper over the dough and fill with baking beads. Bake at 350 F for 10 minutes, remove the paper and beads carefully, then bake tart shells for another 5-8 minutes until golden brown.
- Let cool completely before filling.
For the salted caramel sauce
- 220 grams granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 200 ml heavy cream
- 2 – 2 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 170 grams unsalted butter
- In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, pour in sugar and water. Let this mixture come to a boil and swirl the pan once a while. Watch the sugar mixture closely to prevent burning. Once mixture turns to golden brown color, turn off the heat and add in the butter. Be careful as the mixture will sizzle and spit.
- Whisk the butter into the mixture. Then add in heavy cream and salt. I added 2 1/2 tsp of sea salt. If you don’t like it that salty, then just add in 2 tsp.
- Let the salted caramel cool for 10 minutes then place it in the fridge to thicken up. Store unused salted caramel in an airtight container. It will last for 2 weeks in the fridge.
For cream cheese filling
- 250 grams cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 egg
- 50 grams castor sugar
- 25 grams condensed milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Place all ingredients in mixing bowl and beat with a paddle attachment until smooth.
- Scoop about 2.5 tbsp of filling into each tart shell.
- Add 1-2 tsp salted caramel sauce and swirl lightly with a toothpick.
- Bake at 180 C for 14 minutes. Cover top of the tarts with aluminum foil about 8-10 minutes into baking.
- Let cool completely. Chill in the fridge overnight to set.