Monday, October 7, 2013

Tarte Tatin: French for "delicious but difficult"...

With a plethora of apples from our apple picking trip, I decided to challenge myself and channel my inner Martha with a Tarte Tatin.

This seemingly easy recipe came with some challenges, the caramel leaked into the oven and luckily for Ivan's nose, we smelled the burning and were able to avoid dessert and homeowner disaster :)

However, even for that scare, I would try this recipe again. The flavor is incredible, the homemade caramel, buttery soft apples, and deliciously flaky crust were the perfect ending to a relaxing Sunday at home.

Here is the recipe, adapted from "The Baking Handbook" by Martha Stewart. I added in some key advice that will save you the stress I suffered, so all should go smoothly for you, my faithful audience.

First make the dough:
1 1/4 cups of flour
1 teaspoon of salt
1 stick of butter, chopped into 8 pieces
1/4 cup of ice water

Blend the flour, butter and salt in a food processor until combined and pebble-like.

Add the ice water and pulse until combines into a dough.

Remove from food processor and mold into a ball with your hands.

I LOVE this pie crust tool I received as a gift from a friend in Vermont. You throw the dough in the bag, roll it out and VOILA! Instant perfection and no mess. SWOON.

Get yours here!

Put your dough in the fridge and begin to make your dessert.

1 cup of sugar
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
4 tablespoons of butter cut into pieces (plus more for pan)
4 apples peeled and cut into quarters. (I mixed sweet and baking apples, using a half apple in the middle of my tart.)

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Then, grease a pie pan generously with butter. Place pan on a cookie sheet for baking to avoid run off of the caramel. TRUST ME HERE!

2. In a small saucepan, mix the sugar, 2 tablespoons of water and the lemon juice. Bring to a boil and mix until it turns into an amber color, this took about 6 minutes for me.

3. Pour the mixture into the pie pan and then sprinkle the butter pieces.

4. Working quickly, place the apples curved side down in a circular shape.

5. Bring out dough from refrigerator, and place on top of the apples lightly pressing down.

6. Bake for 20-25 minutes until crust is golden.

7. Allow to cool for 10 minutes, and then place a large plate over the pie pan and flip over quickly. (Be very careful of dripping caramel as it will be extremely hot.) Place the plate with the tart on a wire rack to cool completely.

8. Serve with vanilla ice cream. Trust me.

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