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« Apple Green-Chili Pie With Cheddar Crust and Walnut Streusel | Walnut Giveaway from California Walnuts | Pie Month | Main | lemon cream icebox pie | pie month »

Malted Crisp Tart (via Baked Explorations by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito) | Pie Month


This is the 2nd entry in our Month of Pie. Pie Month is a celebration of things we love. Because life is hard, and there should always be more pie. Have a look at the other entries. Really. 
Pie #1 - Lemon Cream Icebox Pie
Pie #3 - Apple Green-Chili Pie with Cheddar Crust and Walnut Streusel
Pie #4 -  Peanut Butter Cream Pie with Chocolate Cream Pie, Caramel & Deep Dark Fudge

One of my crowning achievements in life is teaching my father how to make Diplomat Cream. And caramelized crisp rice.
I made this tart with my dad. He and my mom drove the day after Christmas in the middle of what turned out to be a blizzard to get our house so that they could bring Christmas gifts to their grandkids (and see us, too, I suppose).
We made this is the last day of their visit. The kids were down for a nap (and so was Karen), and my mom was doing a little bit of shopping. It was just my dad and I.  I started making the tart, and he called from the other room if he could help. I initially said no because I wanted him to just enjoy himself andrest a bit before the long drive back home to Indiana.
Then I realized I wanted to cook again with my dad. I should take every chance I can to cook with both of my parents. So I asked him for help. Which is the best thing you can ask for from my dad. He’s at his best when he knows you need him. Dad doesn't mind playing sous chef at all, and he's a pretty good one, too. I gave them full reign over caramelizing the rice cereal (he had doubts about the Baked guys’ instructions to look for a little bit of smoke to know they were done, but there came the smoke, and the candied cereal came out perfectly).

He asked if anything else needed to be done. I almost sent him back to the couch, but there was Diplomat Cream to be made (capialized for emphasis). Diplomat Cream is essentially just stirring, and my motto is “Can you stir? Great, then you can make (insert one of the serveral dishes we’ve made on here that require a little stirring, like risotto or lemon curd).” Diplomat Cream is the same thing, just some stirring. So other than the crust, my dad made this tart.
The time involved actually making the tart is minimal. However there is a lot of resting and cooling time that you need to plan for. My advice? Start this tart early in the morning or the night before you actually need it. None of the steps are time-consuming, and it all comes together rather nicely.
Is a tart a pie? When we told people we were going to be doing the Month of Pie, the second tweet that I received was encouragement to remember that pies and tarts are all part of the same family. I like that family. And I love this tart. Other than the three pieces I let my dad, mom, and Karen eat, I ate the whole tart. I intended to share with the neighbors, but I ended up eating every single crumb, often standing over the kitchen sink while no one was looking. It’s a beautiful tart, and the looks match the taste. From the malt in the cream and chocolate to the Whoppers on top and in the filling, it’s flavor is bold and creamy. And a whole lot of happy.

A note about the is spectacular. Steal this crust. Make it for anything you possible can. It is so simple to make, and the brown sugar provides such a depth of flavor. Genius, Baked. Genius. (You really should buy their new book. It’s all spectacular.)

recipe | Malted Crisp Tart (via Baked Explorations by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito)

Ingredient list

For the brown sugar crust

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon malted milk powder
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into half-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the caramelized crispies
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 cups crisp rice cereal
For the milk chocolate ganache
  • 8 ounces good-quality milk chocolate, coarsely chopped, (We used Scharffen Berger)
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons malted milk powder
For the malted pastry cream
  • 1 1/4 c whole milk
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • one large egg yolk
  • One large egg
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons malted milk powder
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 ounces heavy cream
Additional items needed
  • One cup crushed malted milk balls
  • More malted milk balls to make it look pretty on top

To make the crust
Spray or butter the tart pan.  Pull out your food processor. Add all the ingredients for the crust in and pulse until you get crumbs.

Dump the mixture from the food processor into the tart pan. Press the crust into place.

Put the tart crust into the freezer for about 20 min.

Meanwhile turn on your oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Take the tart pan out of the freezer, put it on a baking sheet, and throw it  in the oven until golden brown between 20 and 30 min. Ours took 23 minutes. Pull it out of the oven and place on a wire rack to cool.

For the caramelized crisp rice
Note - If you have a Silpat or similar type of baking pad, you'll want to use it here. If you don't, the Baked guys recommend taking aluminum foil and spraying it  with vegetable oil.

Add 2 tablespoons of water and the sugar into a small saucepan. Place over low heat and get it boiling for 1 minute.

Add in the rice cereal and stir. Keep stirring until you start to see wisps of smoke rising up. Stir just a little bit more to make sure the caramelized sugar is all over the crispies and then pour them out onto the Silpat  or aluminum foil. Once cooled, break them into pieces if needed.

For the ganache
Chop up your milk chocolate and place in a medium-size bowl.

Whisk together the heavy cream and malt powder in a saucepan. Place it over low heat and bring to a simmer. Watch the cream carefully because it can boil in an instant and then it becomes terrible frothy mass. I speak from experience, having to start over. Pour it over the chocolate and let it sit for 2 minuntes. After the 2 minuntes. put your whisk in the middle of the mixture, turning around and around until you reach the edge of the bowl. It's a really beautiful process to watch the ganache come together.

To assemble the tart
Pour the ganache into the tart shell. Throw some crused malted milk balls on top along with one cup of the caramelized crisp rice. Slightly press milk balls and crispies into the ganache so that it all sticks together. Throw the tart in the refrigerator while you make the malted Diplomat Cream

Make the malted diplomat cream
Place a fine mesh sieve over a medium bowl.

In a medium-sized saucepan, bring the milk to a simmer and keep it warm.

In another medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg, egg yolk, cornstarch, and the malted milk powder until it becomes pale-ish yellow (about 1 minunte). Whisk in half of the warm milk into the egg mixture. Then pour the mixture back into the remaining milk in saucepan. Whisk the saucepan constantly until the whole thing thickens. Our mixture took about 8 minuntes. Yours may take less. Take it off the heat and throw in the butter and vanilla and whisk again until fully incorporated.

Then take the pastry cream and pour it into the sieve to remove any of the milk solids. Take a piece of plastic wrap and put it right on top of the pastry cream so you don't get any nasty thick skin on it. Put in the refrigerator for at least an hour until chilled.

Bring pastry cream after an hour out of the refrigerator and whisk it up until it looks like itself again.

In another bowl, whisk the heavy cream until you get soft peaks.Then fold it into the Diplomat Cream.

Take the tart out of the refrigerator and pour the Diplomat Cream on top of the milk chocolate. Garnish with some more malted milk balls if you have them (make it impressive) and then the rest the caramelized crispies on top. It then needs to refrigerate for at least another 30 minuntes. Sorry to make you wait.


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Reader Comments (14)

I've been seeing recipes from this book EVERYWHERE! And each one looks fantastic!

Great tart, my friends!!! Can't see what you do next!

January 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterA Thought For Food

To say that this post was worth the wait is an understatement for sure. I had not heard of this pie before and you gave it the most beautiful of introductions. I ate before reading this but your delicious photograph makes me hungry, really hungry for a piece of this.

BTW, at the risk of sounding totally ignorant, I've never heard of malted milk powder. Do you purchase it in the baking aisle of the grocery store?

January 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPaula

You're right. I need to make it!

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSheri

Geez Louise people! How can I not make it?

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmy | She Wears Many Hats

I officially volunteer to be your sous chef the next time you're planning to whip this up.

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterWendi @ Bon Appetit Hon

That is a thing of beauty! Whoppers - how inspired, hee hee!! Love it. Pie Month is going to be the death of me. I want them all.

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbreadandputter

Yum! I promise to steal the crust recipe. Love the caramel crisped rice, so I'm stealing that too! Pies/ tarts tarts/pies --interchangeable to me! Love your Pie Month. I'd love to do this, but family would kick my butt for increasing the size of their butts! Maybe I need a surrogate family. Lucky you guys were sensible and bred some tasters of your own. Oh well... guess I'll have to stick with licking the screen.

My guy would love this tart. He hoarded our 2 year old's Halloween efforts. Whoppers. This looks so delicious. Might be a nice dessert to whip up for his return from Dallas tonight.

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPretend Chef

Yes. Please.

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnna@londonfoodieny

Thanks, all, for the nice comments. We accept volunteer help in the kitchen anytime. However, you may also be called to change some diapers. So you have been warned.

@Paula, malted milk powder is right beside your Nestle Quick or Ovaltine. We used Carnation brand, and I see from a search online that King Arthur also has one.

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterThe Pêche

You had me at malt...

January 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

I found your post after just making this same tart. After tasting all the components, I know the finished product is going to be amazing. I have a question for you about the candied crispies, though. Mine never caramelized. They just absorbed all the syrup and dried out but never browned. Should I have waited to add them until after the syrup started caramelizing? Should my flame have been higher? I ended up not using them at all because they just tasted like stale sweet cereal. But who needs cereal when you have whoppers, right? Thanks for reading and sharing such a great post- you and your dad sound like my mom and I in the kitchen!

March 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

@Christina - Thanks for the feedback. I'm not sure what you did differently than I did. I did exactly what you did. Did you get smoke or not? I thought we'd waited long enough but hadn't seen smoke. But then I waited a few more mins, and we got smoke. I think they do add a happy crunch to the tart, but you could always compensate with some crushed Whoppers!

March 23, 2011 | Registered Commenterthepeche

WoW!! I've got this chilling in the fridge right now for my husbands bday tomorrow!!!! :-D So far so good! I'll top it in the morning!!! And axiously await him cutting into to it tomorrow night!!Thank you!!

May 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMary
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