For me, Thanksgiving is all about fall fruits. I love apples, pears, pumpkin, sweet potato, squash… in every course, from soup through dessert. This year being the first Rich and I have hosted Thanksgiving, my plan was to follow this generic course. Fortunately, I realized about a week prior that this would not be acceptable to my 62 year old father-in-law or my 4 year old nephew, who both believe anything but chocolate for dessert is basically a sacrilege.
I decided to fulfill this requirement to my utmost by making a chocolate torte with a chocolate crust. (Think how luscious this would look on a Thanksgiving table!) Little did I know, this combination does not exist nor has anyone attempted a non-dairy version. Therefore, I decided to join two recipes. The crust is from The Kosher Baker, and some fine tuning is definitely still required. During my pre-Thanksgiving practice run, I had too many dry ingredients left over after adding the margarine. For the real thing, I needed to halve the dry ingredients, resulting in a crust that was too sticky. I ended up adding lots of flour and confectioners sugar just to be able to work with it. My recommendation would be to combine of all the dry ingredients first, adding them to your margarine half a cup at a time until you achieve the correct consistency.
The filling brought a whole other issue. I found a recipe for Passover chocolate torte from The Washington Post, which recommended coconut or almond milk. Although I am very familiar with butter substitutes, milk substitutes remain an enigma. I tracked down three options in the grocery store the Sunday prior to Thanksgiving: coconut, almond, and oat milk. I believed the coconut flavor would be overpowering and I’m allergic to almonds, so oat it was! Rich and I made the mistake of tasting some – straight up – when we got home. It was basically really thick water that smelled like oats. With great trepidation, I began my test torte. The result, however, was great! The only taste was chocolate, which came out like fudge. My only wish was that it had been a bit lighter, more like a custard. If you have any suggestions, please let us know!
A few suggestions:
I used pareve chocolate chips: easy-ish to find, and you don’t have to cut them up
If you don’t have anything super smelly in the fridge, don’t cover the torte right away. Let it firm up and then use seran wrap to cover it. Otherwise the wrap sticks and makes the torte surface look in need of moisturizer when removed.
- 3/4 cups flour
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
- 2/3 cup confectioners sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) pareve margarine
- 1-1/4 cups oat milk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 13 ounces (a little over 2 cups) pareve chocolate chips
- 2 egg yolks
- Combine the dry ingredients for the crust and add half to the margarine. Use your hands to combine. Slowly add more dry ingredients until you can’t add any more. Wrap in plastic and freeze for 20 minutes. Pat into greased tart pan with removable bottom. Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 minutes.
- Heat the oat milk over medium heat until bubbles start to form. Remove from heat and add the vanilla and chocolate. Let sit for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth. Add the egg yolks, stirring constantly.
- Scoop into the hot shell (just removed from the oven) and bake for 25 minutes. I covered the edges with aluminum foil half way through to prevent burning.
- I used very expensive out-of-season strawberries to garnish this cake for Thanksgiving. It needed something, but I would have loved to use a more seasonal fruit. Any ideas? If you don’t have a fruit garnish, serve with compote or fruit sorbet – you’ll need something to break up all that chocolate! Happy Thanksgiving!