We all know that everything is better with chocolate, so why not Thanksgiving?
Among the holiday's traditional desserts, seasonal flavors rightly loom large: pumpkins, apples, pears, persimmons, nuts. Chocolate doesn't really figure in.
But a little chocolate can only make things better. And don't fret about tradition. After all, when was the last time you went to a Thanksgiving meal with only one dessert? (Me? Never.)
So I say this year, let at least one of the many offerings include something rich and dark and fudgy. Even if you're not a chocolate lover yourself, someone at the table will be. And they will be ever so thankful.
Chocolate Coconut Pecan Tart
Makes 8 servings.
1 C unsalted butter (2 sticks), room temperature
60 g confectioners' sugar (about 1⁄2 C plus 1 TBS)
1 lg egg yolk
3⁄4 tsp vanilla extract
150 g all-purpose flour (about 11⁄4 C)
20 g Dutch-processed cocoa powder (about 1⁄4 C)
1⁄4 tsp fine sea saltv1⁄3 C honey
2 TBS heavy cream
55 g dark brown sugar (about 1⁄3 C)
1 lg egg
2 TBS bourbon
30 g coconut flakes (about 1⁄2 C)
175 g whole pecans (about 13⁄4 C)
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together 1 stick of butter and the confectioners' sugar. Beat in the yolk until combined, then beat in the vanilla. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder and 1⁄8 teaspoon salt. With the mixer running on low, beat in the dry ingredients until just combined. Scrape the dough into a ball and flatten into a disc. Cover with plastic wrap and chill 1 hour.
On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into an 11-inch round. Transfer to a 10-inch fluted tart pan. Chill 30 minutes.
Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Line the crust with foil or parchment paper and fill with pie weights. Bake 15 minutes; remove weights and foil and return crust to the oven to bake until dry to the touch, 5 to 10 minutes more. Cool.
Melt the remaining stick of butter. In a bowl, combine butter, honey, cream, brown sugar, egg, bourbon and 1⁄8 teaspoon salt. Stir in the coconut and pecans. Pour filling into the crust. Bake until the top is golden brown and the filling is gently set, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool completely before serving.