Chocolatier Robert Linxe, author of La Maison du Chocolat
Heart-Shaped Chocolate-Apricot Tart
(Tarte en Coeur Abricot Chocolat)

Adapted from La Maison du Chocolat, by Robert Linxe.
This recipe is reprinted with permission from Rizzoli Publications.

Yield: 6-7 servings

1 stick plus 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, soft but still quite cold
1/2 cup plus 1 Tablespoon confectioners' sugar
1 egg 1 egg yolk
2 cups plus 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

Apricot Filling
1/2 cup fresh apricot purée or apricot sauce (Available at gourmet markets)
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar

Chocolate Ganache Filling
6 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate (3 1/2 ounces maracaïbo, 3 1/2 ounces orinoco)
2 ounces milk chocolate (merida)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 vanilla bean, split

At least 5 hours before serving, prepare the pastry: Place the butter and sugar in a bowl and quickly rub between your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Add the egg and egg yolk and work them in until combined. Add the flour and mix quickly; do not overwork the dough. Form into a ball, place in a plastic bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. (You can also prepare the pastry one day in advance).

Grease a heart shaped tart pan. Remove the pastry from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. Roll out to a 1/4-inch thickness and transfer to the prepared pan. Prick the base all over with a fork and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (this prevents the pastry from shrinking during cooking).

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the pastry from the refrigerator. Line the bottom and sides with parchment paper and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the beans and paper, and continue cooking until just golden. Remove from the oven and let cool.

To prepare the apricot filling: Place the apricot purée in a saucepan. Add the sugar and bring to a boil. Cook over low heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and let cool. Pour into the bottom of the pastry shell.

For the chocolate ganache filling: Place both the chocolates on a work surface and chop finely. Transfer to a heatproof mixing bowl and set aside. Place the cream in a saucepan, add the split vanilla bean, and bring to a boil. Boil for 20 seconds, then pour through a strainer onto the chocolate. Let stand for 30 seconds; discard the vanilla bean. Whisk to combine in a circular motion, starting from the middle and working out.

When the chocolate is completely melted and still lukewarm (not hot), pour over the apricot filling. Let harden before serving.

Tip: The temperature of the chocolate ganache must be correct: It should be warm enough to have a pouring consistency, but not so warm that it mixes with the apricot filling instead of resting on top.