Bittersweet Chocolate-Orange Tarts with Whiskey Custard Sauce

Dark chocolate and orange make a wonderful winter flavor combination and the addition of whiskey custard elevates this simple tart to an elegant dinner party finale (or a Valentine’s Day treat for someone special). Our friends at Catoctin Creek provide the rye whiskey we use, but bourbon will work, or eliminate the spirits and add a touch of vanilla for a child-friendly version of the custard sauce. Makes 6 individual tarts.

Whiskey Custard Sauce

Makes about 2 cups

4 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1cup milk
2 tablespoons Roundstone Rye Whiskey

  1. Prepare an ice bath with an empty bowl nested in a larger bowl half-filled with ice.
  2. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together in a small stainless steel saucepan.
  3. Place the milk in another small saucepan and bring to a boil.
  4. Slowly whisk the hot milk into the yolk mixture.
  5. Switch to a wooden spoon and stir the yolk mixture over medium heat until it thickens slightly and coats the spoon.  Immediately pour the custard sauce into the empty bowl set over ice, add the whiskey and cool.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Bittersweet Chocolate-Orange Tarts

6, 4-inch baked tart shells (use your favorite pastry crust recipe or store-bought tart shells will work just fine)
6 ounces semisweet chocolate
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
1 egg
2 yolks
1/4 cup sugar
finely grated zest of 1 orange

  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F.  Set the tart shells out on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  2. Melt chocolate and butter in a double boiler.  Set aside.
  3. With an electric mixer fitted with a whisk, whip the egg, egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until thick, about 5 minutes.
  4. Fold the chocolate mixture and orange zest into the egg mixture.  Divide the mixture among the tart shells.
  5. Bake until set, about 10 to 12 minutes.  Let cool to room temperature and serve with the custard sauce.

Time saver tip: Substitute a store-bought caramel sauce for the whiskey sauce.

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