Monday, December 6, 2010

French Apple Tart

A beautifully simple dessert.

If you are pinched for time, use frozen puff pastry (such as Pepperidge Farm's product)  instead of making your own. 

To make your own pastry using a food processor:

Mix together flour, sugar, and salt.

Dice the butter (quickly--you want it to stay cold).

Toss it in,
and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Then add ice water splash by splash, JUST until the dough holds together.

Get your dough-landing area ready.

Park the dough there and sprinkle lightly with flour.

Press it into a flattened disk,
wrap with plastic, and refrigerate.

Peel the apples.

Cut them stem to end.

Use a melon baller to scoop out the core

and to remove the stem and end.

Slice the apples about 1/4-inch thick.

Get your parchment-lined baking sheet ready.

 Get your dough-rolling station ready.

Roll dough to about 1/8th-inch thick.

Use a knife and a ruler to make a clean, straight edge.

Start in the middle,
and make a diagonal line of apple slices.

 Fill in remaining apples, diagonally.

 Use a knife to make the edges pretty again.

Sprinkle apples with sugar, dot with butter,
and bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
After tart has baked, brush with a mixture of
heated apricot jelly and Calvados (or water).

French Apple Tart
serves 6-8

For the pastry:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, diced
1/2 cup ice water

For the apples:
4 Granny Smith apples
1/2 cup sugar
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, small-diced
1/2 apricot jelly or warm sieved apricot jam
1 tablespoon Calvados, rum, or water

For the pastry, place the flour, salt and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade.  Pulse for a few seconds to combine.  Add the butter and pulse 10 to 12 times, until the butter is in small bits the size of peas.  With the motor running, pout the ice water down the feed tube and pulse just until the dough starts to come together.  Dump onto a floured board and knead quickly into a ball.  Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Roll the dough slightly larger than 10 x 14 inches.  Using a ruler and a small knife, trim the edges.  Place the dough on the prepared sheet and refrigerate while you prepare the apples.

Peel the apples and cut them in half through the stem.  Remove the stems and cores with a sharp knife and a melon baller.  Slice the apples crosswise in 1/4-inch thick slices.  Place overlapping slices of apples diagonally down the middle of the tart and continue making diagonal rows on both sides of the first row until the pastry is covered with apples.  Sprinkle with the full 1/2 cup of sugar and dot with the butter.

Bake for 45 minute to an hour, until the pastry is browned and the edges of the apples start to brown.  Rotate the pan once during cooking.  If the pastry puffs up in one area, cut a little slit with a knife to let the air out.  Don't worry!  The apple juices will burn in the pan but the tart will be fine!  When the tart is done, heat the apricot jelly together with the Calvados and brush the apples and the pastry completely with the jelly mixture.  Loosen the tart with a metal spatula so it doesn't stick to the paper.  Allow to cool and serve warm or at room temperature. 


Cathy M~(checkitoff) said...

When can I pop over to taste this yummy dessert? mmmm....looks delish! hugs, Cathy

Unknown said...

That's a LOT of butter "dots" ... LOL no wonder you're out of butter! Seriously though, I really want to sink my teeth into these lovelies!