These chocolate-hazelnut tartlets are guilty pleasures. The thin chocolate crust stuffed with hazelnut spread and velvety ganache is just incredible. Great news, tart shells and praliné can be made in advance. Though, the ganache should be made the day tartlets are served. Avoid refrigeration at all cost. Indeed, these beauties should be served at room temperature and can be stored at room temp or cool ≈60ºF/15ºC for up to 48 hours. If refrigerated, leave tartlets out for a couple of hours before eating.
In the food processor, mix butter along with almond meal, sugar and salt. Add the egg and smooth out. Add flour and cocoa powder – mix until it comes together. Divide pastry in 2 and make two 2 mm thick sheets – use a baking mat and parchment. Freeze pastry sheets. If you use 3.5-inch/8 cm diameter tart rings, cut out same diameter pastry disks. Do to so, leave out frozen pastry sheet for an min or so, and when it just begins to soften make the cuts and freeze. Do likewise with the other pastry sheet for the stripes that shall be a couple of millimeter taller than the ring and 9.75-inch/25 cm long. Do not hesitate to freeze pastry between steps otherwise it'll turn into a nightmare. Save pastry leftover and scraps for another batch. Place 6 frozen pastry disks onto a baking tray lined with a baking mat or Silpain or parchment. Add greased tart rings (the crust should be fit right inside the ring). Grab one stripe and leave it out for a min or so – and as soon as it becomes flexible, finish the tartlet and seal it at the seam. Do likewise with remaining stripe and freeze tartlets for about 20 mins and trim off excess dough. Store tartlets in the freezer until ready to bake.
Preheat oven to 350ºF/180ºC. Blind-bake tart shells for 20 mins with the pie weights and 10 more mins without. Let cool. Baked tart shells can be stored at room temp for up to 4 5 days or frozen for weeks.
Praliné spread can be found online. Nutella can also be used instead. Toast nuts for 15 mins or so and cool. Meanwhile, turn sugar into a dark caramel and spread it over a baking mat to cool off. Once hardened, break caramel sheet into pieces. In the food processor, turn nuts into meal and pour (while running) the caramel. Add a pinch of salt and vanilla is desired. Stop the food processor a couple of times to rest and scraps sides of the bowl. Indeed, it may take 5 minutes + before mixture turns into paste. Add a drizzle of hazelnut oil or neutral oil to ease it if necessary. Keep praliné almost indefinitely in a seal container at room temp or refrigerated. Stir it up prior to use as the fat may raise to the surface.
Make ganache when ready to fill up tartlets. Bring heavy cream and honey to a boil. Pour half of the hot cream into the chopped chocolate (if using disks, no need to chop). Let sit a min or so and stir it up with a rubber spatula. When the mixture turns smooth and glossy, do likewise with the remaining cream. Add butter and mix using an immersion blender keeping the nozzle down to prevent bubbles to form. Keep ganache at room temp.
Top each bottom tart shell with a tablespoon (20g) praliné spread and fill them up with the soft ganache. Sprinkle some cocoa nibs and hazelnuts. Let set a couple of hours at room temp before eating. Enjoy!