These pretty tortes have slightly soft tops and are covered with a spiral of whipped cream. They are served with strawberry puree and fresh berries. Depending on the size of your tart molds, you may get eight tortes from the recipe.
- Water - 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons
- Sugar - 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons
- Semi-sweet chocolate - 9-1/2 ounces, chopped
- Unsweetened Chocolate - 3-1/2 ounces, chopped
- Unsalted Butter - 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons, softened
- Eggs - 6 large
- Sugar - 1/2 cup
- Strawberry Puree (see Basics, fruit purees and coulis) - 1 cup
- Heavy (whipping) cream - 1 cup, beaten to firm peaks
- Semi-sweet chocolate - 2 ounces, shaved
- Confectioner’s sugar - for dusting
- Strawberries - 18 large
- Mint sprigs - 6
Butter six 6- to 8-ounce round tart pans and line with parchment paper. Lightly butter the parchment. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Bring the water and sugar almost to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Remove from heat and stir in the chocolate until completely melted. Add the butter and stir until melted and blended.
In a mixer, beat the eggs and 1/2 cup of the sugar until slightly thickened and pale; a stream drizzled back over the mixture will form a slowly-dissolving ribbon. Fold the chocolate mixture into the eggs. Pour into the prepared tart pans. Do not fill all the way to the top; allow space for the cakes to expand. Place the filled tart pans in a large baking pan and fill the baking pan with hot water one-fourth of the way up the sides of the tarts. Bake 40 minutes. Remove and cool to room temperature. Cover loosely and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
To serve: Fill six dessert plates with strawberry puree. Take the tortes out of the refrigerator and slightly warm the pans by wrapping the bottoms with a hot towel. Invert onto serving plates and remove the parchment. Put the whipped cream into a pastry bag fitted with a 3/8-inch plain tip and pipe a tight spiral of whipped cream on top of each torte. Sprinkle each with shaved chocolate and dust with confectioner’s sugar. Leaving the hulls attached, slice the strawberries in narrow slices vertically almost through the attachment point and fan three on each plate. Garnish the strawberries with a mint sprig.