Mint isn’t a traditional Irish flavor, but the color of the green mint mousse in this tart lends itself so well to St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, I had to tie them together somehow! The Mint White Chocolate Tart takes a little bit of effort to make with its multiple steps, but the end result is fluffy, subtly sweet and has a perfect hint of mint.
I am a crumb crust enthusiast; sometimes I’d even go as far as to say the crust is the best part of a pie! This tart features a crust made with crushed thin chocolate wafer cookies (do this in a food processor – it’s quick and ensures you won’t have big cookie pieces), melted butter and a little sugar. Press this into the bottom and slightly up the sides of an 11-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.
The crust needs to bake for eight minutes so it doesn’t crumble apart when you cut it for serving. Oh, and a word to the wise – remember that the tart pan has a removable bottom! Always pick up your pan from the sides, not underneath. Otherwise, you’ll have to clean cookie crumbs off the counter and re-press the crust.
Once the crust is baked, combine the softened butter and cream cheese in a bowl and beat until smooth. Softened ingredients are crucial for a silky smooth filling without lumps. Add in the melted chocolate, mint flavoring and green food color, and mix well.
In another bowl, beat the whipping cream until soft peaks form, then slowly add the sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
Gently stir the whipping cream into the butter mixture until it’s all combined.
By now your crust should be completely cooled. Spread the minty mousse over the cooled crust and place it in the fridge for about two hours, or until it’s firm.
Near the end of the tart’s refrigeration time, start making the marshmallow meringue top. Beat the egg whites and vanilla in a large bowl until fluffy, and set aside. Combine sugar, water, corn syrup and salt in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Keep cooking for 10-15 minutes – no stirring – until the mixture reaches 238 F on a candy thermometer. It really will take that long, so don’t get impatient or think you’ve missed something!
Once you hit 238 F, slowly pour the hot sugar into the egg whites while beating on high. If you have a stand mixer, this is the perfect time to pull it out. Whip for about 3-5 minutes until the mixture is glossy and thick and forms fairly stiff peaks – they won’t stand up completely, but the meringue should hold its shape.
Take the chilled mousse from the refrigerator and spread the marshmallow meringue over the top.
Now, to get that toasty marshmallow flavor, use a kitchen torch or your oven’s broiler setting to brown the top of the meringue. The broiler will only take a minute or less. If you’re using a hand torch, move it over the top of the meringue until it turns golden brown.
Cutting the tart is easy – this time lift from the bottom and take the edge of the pan away. This Mint White Chocolate Tart is sure to be a favorite (it disappeared quickly after my photos were taken). Be sure to come back and tell us how you like it! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!