Chocolate, Cherry & Almond Tart

You may or may not be aware that Spanish Picota cherry season is upon us! And if you’re like me and LOVE juicy, slightly sweet but also slightly tart, firm but soft cherries, then I hope you’ll appreciate this [sponsored] post.

Distinguished by their flavour and sweetness, Picota cherries are unique to the Jerte Valley and are grown, harvested and packed under rigorous quality control procedures. The only variety that are detached from the tree without a stalk, they are dark red in colour and have a more fleshy, crunchy texture than other varieties.

What’s more, cherries are great for stress and insomina, contain powerful antioxidants to help fight cell ageing, are great for helping the heart and are bursting with vitamins for skin and hair – so a superfood in their own right!

These gorgeous Spanish Picota cherries are only available in the UK from the third week in June to the beginning of August in all major retailers so be sure to get them when you can – and try out this easy but delicious tart recipe to really make the most of these gorgeous fruit!

Ingredients:

For the base – 

  • 100g oats (I used Quaker)
  • 100g dates (I used Whitworths)
  • 100g almonds
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter (I used Meridian)

For the cherry jam – 

  • 200g Picota cherries, halved
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons chia seeds (I used The Chia Company)

For the chocolate topping – 

  • 1 x can coconut milk, chilled in the fridge overnight
  • 100g dark chocolate (I used Montezuma’s)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (I used The Groovy Food Company)
  • 3 tablespoon cocoa or cacao powder (I used Bioglan)

To decorate – 

  • Picota cherries
  • Chopped almonds
  • Dark chocolate, to drizzle

Get making!

  1. Place the base ingredients in a food processor (I used my Ninja Kitchen) and blend until the ingredients have broken down and come together.
  2. Press into a lined 20cm loose-bottomed tart tin to cover the base and up the sides. Chill in the fridge while you make the next part.
  3. Place the cherries and maple syrup in a pan and simmer for 8-10 minutes until softened and the juices run out. Remove from the heat, mash up well then stir in the chia seeds and chill in the fridge to form a jam.
  4. Scrape out the solid part of the coconut cream into a bowl. Gently melt the coconut oil and dark chocolate then pour into the bowl and whisk in the cocoa powder until smooth. 
  5. Spread the cherry chia jam over the base of the tart to cover in a single layer. Then spoon over the chocolate coconut layer and smooth out evenly. Arrange the cherries around the edge of the tart. Drizzle over some chocolate then sprinkle the chopped almonds over. Chill for at least 2 hours.
  6. When ready to serve, pop out the tin, slice up and serve!