Sunday, 12 June 2011

Salted caramel, peanut and chocolate tarts

We all know that the food world is overflowing with professional talent - for amateurs such as myself, there is plenty of inspiration to be found out there, and I take great pleasure in immersing myself in cooking TV shows, books and magazines. It's something I never tire of.. So, in a way, I think you'll agree with me when I say that it can be quite easy to spend much your actual time in the kitchen following others' recipes rather than trusting your own instincts. And perhaps sometimes, recipes can become a little bit of a crutch when you get into the habit of using them all the time. I have been thinking about this a lot of late, and have realised that this over-reliance on recipes is in part a  symptom and a cause of my lack of confidence in the kitchen. Sure, I've baked and baked for many years, but it is quite rare that I set about creating something entirely of my own invention.

And so it was very timely that I heard about the Lurpak Challenge calling for submissions of original recipes incorporating the iconic butter (I just know you've heard me rave about this product before, so I'll spare you the repetition!). With the added incentive of great prizes at stake, I decided to take a leap of faith in my baking. I lifted my hand from the safety railing, put away all the recipes, and step by step, created something I can call my own. It was a little scary at first, and there were mistakes.. oh yes, and mistakes involving caramel are rather sticky and a pain to clean up... but after three attempts I think I've managed to create something worthy of entry into the competition (I hope!)

Here is my recipe for salted caramel, peanut and chocolate tarts. This recipe combines three things that I absolutely can't live without eating now and then - sweet shortcrust pastry, salted caramel and chocolate. The salted peanuts add a great crunch too. This recipe makes ten 8cm tarts, however, you can easily adapt the method to make one larger 22-24cm tart.


250g plain flour
50g icing sugar
pinch salt
150g unsalted butter, cold and chopped into chunks
iced water

Peanut & Salted Caramel filling
1 cup white sugar
70g Lurpak unsalted butter
1/3 cup thickened cream
1/4 teaspoon sea salt flakes
1/4 cup salted peanuts, chopped

Chocolate ganache
1/2 cup thickened cream
110g dark chocolate (70% cocoa), finely chopped
90g milk chocolate, finely chopped


1. Start with the pastry by adding the plain flour, icing sugar, pinch of salt and 150 grams of butter (cold and roughly chopped into chunks) and pulse until breadcrumbs start to form. Add around 3 tablespoons of ice-cold water, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough starts to come together. Tip the mixture out onto a clean work surface and gently bring together with your hands. Wrap with clingfilm and refrigerate until ready for use.

2. To make the salted caramel, place the white sugar and a few tablespoons of water in a heavy based saucepan over medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar, which will then start to form white lumps. At this point, reduce to low heat and stir regularly as the sugar begins to caramelise and darken. As soon as it reaches a golden-amber colour, remove from the heat immediately and stir in the remaining 70g of butter, 1/3 cup of thickened cream and the salt flakes. Take care doing so as it will spit and splutter. Once smooth, transfer to a bowl/jug to cool.

3. Next, preheat your oven to 200 degrees celcius and start on your pastry cases by lightly greasing ten 8cm loose-based tart tins. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to around 3mm. Cut out 10cm rounds and fold the pastry into the cases, gently pressing the pastry into the grooves. Prick the base of each with a fork and transfer to the freezer for at least 10 minutes. Line each tin with baking paper or foil then fill with pastry weights or dried beans/rice and blind- bake for around 10-15 minutes. Remove the paper/foil and weights and bake for a further 5-10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool in tins.

4. Divide the chopped peanuts between the tart cases and pour over the salted caramel. Place in fridge to set.

5. Meanwhile, to make the ganache heat 1/2 cup of cream in a small saucepan until it is about to boil. Remove from the heat and stir through the chocolate. Allow to cool slightly before diving among the peanut and caramel filled tart cases, then return to the fridge to set.

So there you have it - my original recipe for salted caramel, peanut and chocolate tarts. If you like what you see please, pretty please, vote for me in the Lurpak Challenge! To vote, go to: and register your vote.

Till next time, dear readers

Ladybird x


  1. mmm salted caramel and chocolate - yum! I wonder if theres a vegan version of these floating around the internet. Although I would have to leave out peanuts because im allergic.
    They look so rich and delicious!
    Goodluck in the contest...I tried to vote but couldnt work out how to.


  2. I'm crying a little bit inside because I want these so much! One of my favouriterest flavour combinations right here - off to vote now!

  3. Good luck, I hope your delicious recipe does well. It's so satisfying to create something new isn't it?

  4. Looks amazing! Just voted so good luck!

  5. Three things I can't live without either. I love that you put whole peanuts in there for a little textural crunch.

  6. yum love that last pic with the oozy caramel!

  7. Yum yum yum! Good luck with the competition. And I look forward to seeing more Lady Bird original recipes? I predict a cook book...! QA x

  8. Mmmmmm looks delicious! You've got my vote.

  9. I tried to vote - but am not sure if it worked. Love this recipe. Your photos look amazing! Good luck in the contest.

  10. Salted caramel, peanuts & chocolate = perfection. I love your blog and will definitely be making this!

  11. the caramel.. just oozing out yummm!!

  12. I love this combination, you make it look so easy. They look scrumptious.

  13. OH my! these little tarts are pure temptation and sweet bliss! I particularly like the picture of the warm caramel being poured on the peanuts...

  14. OMG these look toooo delicious for words.

  15. Oh sweet jesus. I need 18 of these immediately.

  16. how funny, i am planning on making basically these exact same tarts tomorrow ;D

  17. Hi Anna,

    I googled you and BINGO!
    I was also in the Lurpak contest "caramel slice" yes I admit my recipe was nothing too special and didn't really deserve a place in the top 15.

    To tell you the truth I was shocked not to see your entry there. You are creative and inspiring & your recipe was A LOT BETTER than some of the competition. Looking at the friends of Lurpack who were the judges I was also disappointed! I could go on & on but I wont.

    Just swung by to say, you should have on in my book!

    Great blog btw.



  18. Thanks for all your comments, everyone.

    I'm afraid I didn't make it very far, but thank you for all of your support in the competition nonetheless :)

  19. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm yum


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