Note from Mommypotamus: Today’s guest post comes from Sheila of Love & Wild Honey, a lover of food and philosophy who asks questions like “Would Jesus mow his lawn?” Thank you for sharing with us today, Sheila!
Magic in a pan.
The Tarte Tatin (tart tah-TAN) was actually a bit of an accident, “legend” has it. One of the Mademoiselle Tatins (Caroline or Stephanie we know not) popularized this simple dessert when she was desperate to serve her guests at the hotel. This dessert was thrown together with haste and some late orchard apples and much to their surprise, a total hit with their guests.
This tarte tatin is rustic and simple in its execution. Fruit is vigorously caramelized with cane sugar and cider in a heavy pan, the rustic and faintly sweet crust is thrown on the top. Then the tarte tatin is thrown into a firey oven and baked until bubbling and seething around the rim, its crust a golden hue. Then when it couldn’t get any wilder..BAM…it is flipped! (wipes condensation from brow in relief)
The butter crust gives a richness to the sprouted flour. If you wish to make this a bit more classical and elegant in taste and presentation, pop some all butter puff pastry on top instead. I am loving this rendition. The sprouted flour gives the crust a hearty graham-cracker like texture and taste, quite delicious.
Salted Caramel Apple Cider Tarte Tatin
For the filling:
- 1/2 cup of organic cane sugar or sucanat (where to buy sucanat)
- 1/2 cup apple cider
- 1/3 cup water
- 3 Tbsp salted grassfed butter (I prefer a lightly salted or demi-sel for this)
- 3-4 granny smith apples, peeled and cut into halves or thirds around the core (size dependent)
- 1/8 tsp sea salt (where to buy unrefined sea salt)
- 1/8 tsp flaky sea salt for sprinkling on the finished tarte
For the crust:
- Preheat oven to 400. Macerate apples in the cider while preparing your crust. This permeates into the apples and offers the benefit of the acid acting to help the apples stay fresh and not brown.
- To make the crust: Rub sugar into butter until well incorporated. Add flour and mix with fingers until crumbly. Add milk and make sure to slightly wet all of the flour. Take up the dough into a ball. Flatten the ball into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator for at least an hour or up to 3 days. Take out of refrigerator and place on counter, loosening plastic wrap around disk. Begin to quickly roll out pie crust in long strokes from center, keeping it between plastic wrap or waxed paper so as not to stick to counter or roller.
- To make the filling: Place a 9-10 inch deep frying pan or cast iron pan on medium heat. When pan is hot, add sugar, water and the cider from the apples. When mixture starts to bubble vigorously, add apples to the pan. Flip apples. Simmer apples in the mixture until the caramel turns a light golden brown. This is not gold, not brown. A lovely golden brown. Apples should be starting to soften to the point that flipping them over is still possible without breaking. Careful.
- To put them together: Place the crust over the pan, trimming the edges. Tuck crust around apples using a spoon or butter knife to form a slight wall. Bake for 22-27 min or until crust is lightly browned and juices are bubbling and caramelizing around the edges. Let set for 10 minutes and then carefully run a knife around the edges & flip tarte onto a large plate. Cut into wedges and serve with some creme fraiche if you wish.
*If you don't have an appropriate pan that works on the stove as well as in the oven and is still easy to flip, a 9 inch pie plate works well. Just caramelize everything on the stovetop and then transfer apples and caramel to the pie plate. Flip using two pot holders onto a plate. I have tried it both ways and even though cast iron looks way cooler, the pie plate is sooo much easier for beginners.
About the author
As a food blogger and World Cultures teacher, Sheila loves writing and photographing where philosophy, culture and food intersect. She places a high value on natural remedies, health and delicious & unique food. Come visit her at loveandwildhoney.com.
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