Recipe: tartes Tatin
We teach this elevated French version of the American apple pie at our cooking school. Named after a hotel in the Loire Valley, this dessert is an ode to the culinary star of fall, which is the apple. Our version requires caramelization of Granny Smith apples before topping with pastry. Done right, the apple slices are overlapped in the sticky caramel yet keep their shape and texture.
1 lb Classic Puff Pastry (page xx)
1 c granulated sugar
1/2 c (1 stick) + 1 Tbsp butter
4 Granny Smith apples
4 tsp ground cinnamon
vanilla ice cream, to serve
Preheat oven to 400ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Roll puff pastry out until 1/8 inch thick and cut 4 (5-inch) circles, using a circular cutter or a small plate as a template.
Place the disks on the prepared baking sheet, prick all over with a fork and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over high heat, combine sugar and 2 tablespoons of water and cook until caramelized and golden brown. Carefully whisk in butter, then pour caramel evenly into 4- to 5-inch pie dishes and set aside to cool.
Peel, halve and core the apples. Thinly slice the apple halves crosswise.
Arrange apple slices in an overlapping circular shape around the base of each pie dish and dust with cinnamon. Cover each tart with a circle of puff pastry, ensuring all the apples are covered. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the pastry is cooked and crisp. Set aside tarts to rest for 5 minutes.
Carefully invert the tarts onto individual plates and top with scoops of ice cream.