Kevin’s grandma turned 92 last Wednesday, so as a precursor to the birthday week, we had a little birthday celebration for her. She can’t have nuts or chocolate, so I whipped up an apple tart.
Here’s the recipe, as adapted from Smitten Kitchen, who never lets me down with recipes:
- 1 C unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1/2 t sugar
- 1/8 t salt
- 6 T (or 3/4 stick) COLD unsalted butter, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 1/2 T chilled water
- 2 pounds apples (Golden Delicious or another tart, firm variety), peeled, cored (save peels and cores), and sliced thinly [NOTE: 2 pounds is about 5 small apples, and I could only squeeze in about 3 1/2 apples in my tart pan laid out the way I had it]
- 2 T unsalted butter, melted
- 3-4 T sugar
- 1/2 C sugar
- Mix flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer or food processor; add 2 tablespoons of the butter. Blend until dough resembles coarse cornmeal. Add remaining butter; mix until biggest pieces look like large peas.
- Dribble in cold water, stir, then dribble in more, until dough just holds together. The easiest way to do this is tablespoon by tablespoon out of a glass of ice water. Toss dough with hands, letting it fall through fingers, until it’s ropy with some dry patches. If there are a lot of dry patches, add another half tablespoon water. Keep tossing until you can roll the dough into a ball. Flatten into a 4-inch-thick disk; refrigerate. After at least 30 minutes, remove; let soften so it’s malleable but still cold. Smooth cracks at edges.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll into a 14-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick. Joe and Elsa got us this SWEET pastry mat that made it so much easier to roll out my dough to the right size around. I don’t know about you, but my pie crust circles always end up more like an oval, so this really helped.
- Dust excess flour from both sides with a dry pastry brush.
- Place the dough in a lightly greased 9.5-inch round tart pan, or simply on a parchment-lined baking sheet if you want to go galette-style with it. Heat oven to 400°F.
- Overlap apples on dough in a ring 2 inches from edge if going galette-style, or up to the sides if using the tart pan. Continue inward until you reach the center. Fold any dough hanging over pan back onto itself; crimp edges at 1-inch intervals.
- Brush melted butter over apples and onto dough edge. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon sugar over dough edge and the other 2 tablespoons over apples. You can use another tablespoon if you like your tarts really sweet.
- Bake in center of oven until apples are soft, with browned edges, and crust has caramelized to a dark golden brown (about 45 minutes), making sure to rotate tart every 15 minutes.
- While your tart is baking, make the glaze. Put reserved peels and cores in a large saucepan, along with 1/2 cup sugar. Pour in just enough water to cover; simmer for 25 minutes. Strain syrup.
- Remove tart from oven, slide onto cooling rack, and let cool at least 15 minutes.
- Brush glaze over tart, slice, and serve. Vanilla ice cream pairs wonderfully with this!
I made the tart the night before the party (and glazed it the night before) and the tart wasn’t soggy or anything. It’s a really delicious tart. Next time I make this, I may add a wee pinch of cinnamon to in the melted butter that gets brushed onto the tart prior to folding the crust over.