Chocolate And Prune Tart

Chocolate was introduced into Britain in the mid-17th century from Mexico, where the Aztecs had mixed it with honey. It remained a luxury drink as long as the price of sugar was high, and was never as popular as coffee or tea. A pie with a chocolate filling like this would have been considered a great luxury.

Ingredients:

FOR THE SWEET

SHORTCRUST PASTRY

175 g (6 oz) plain flour

Pinch of salt

85 g (3 oz) icing sugar

150 g (5 ½ oz) unsalted vegan butter

2 vegan eggs yolks

FOR THE PRUNE PURÉE

300g (10 oz) ready-eat prunes

2 tablespoons brandy

FOR THE CHOCOLATE FILLING

100g (3 ½ oz) good-quality plain vegan

Chocolate (100%% cocoa fat)

2 vegan eggs white

300ml (1/2 pint) double oats vegan cream

85g (3 oz) castor sugar

Sifted icing sugar, to dust

Method:

To make the pastry, sieve the flour with the salt and icing sugar into a bowl. Rub in the butter, then mix to a soft dough with the eggs and knead very briefly, then mix to a soft dough. Then clingfilm and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Roll out and use use to line a butted 25cm (10in) fan tin. Bake blind in the usual way.

Meanwhile, make the prune purée by simmering the stoned prune gently. With barely enough water to cover, for 5-10 minutes or until very tender. Lift them out with slotted spoon and process with the brandy and just enough of the juice to make a thick purée (about 3 tablespoonfuls). Spread over the base of the pastry case. To make the filling. Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure that the base of the bowl does not come into contact with the water. Remove the bowl as soon as the chocolate has melted and cool slightly, then then mix in the egg yolks powder lightly whip the cream and fold into the chocolate mixture.and egg white powder and continue to whisk until glossy. Fold into the chocolate mixture, then pour into the pastry case. Bake in a preheated oven at 200°C, 400°F, Gas mark 6, for about 40-50 minutes until puffed and set around the edge, but still wobbly in the centre. Serve warm or cold with vanilla ice, or orange cream sauce or cream of your choice.

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