French Apple Tart

An excellent, even if seemingly simple tart. The trick is to have

  • a good shell (you can easily start with the adaptation of Jamie Oliver’s),
  • matching size tart pan, so that the pastry comes out thin but strong, and
  • some esthetically pleasing finish – I used diluted (with brandy) prune butter in my first attempt, because they were handy – great success in taste, even if rather ugly in appearance… Will keep testing, it is a well worth exercise.

Makes 8-10 servings

  • 1 crust for an 11″ tart loose bottom pan
  • ½ tsp lemon zest and
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 4 large Granny Smith apples (2 pounds), peeled and cored
  • 4 large Golden Delicious apples (2 pounds), peeled and cored – I only had some Cortlands, and used those instead of Granny Smith and Golden Delicious – very good results, too.
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup apricot preserves, pressed through a sieve
  1. Reserve 2 Granny Smiths and 1 Golden Delicious apples for the top.
  2. Slice remaining apples.
  3. In large skillet, melt 4 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat.
  4. Add sliced apples and cook 5 minutes.
  5. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook 15 minutes or until very tender.
  6. Stir in lemon peel and juice, 1/2 cup sugar, vanilla and nutmeg.
  7. Cook, stirring frequently, 25 to 30 minutes until puree is very thick and has reduced to 2 1/4 cups.
  8. Cool to room temperature.
  1. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375° F.
  1. Thinly slice remaining apples.
  2. Spoon purée into baked, cooled tart shell and spread evenly.
  3. Arrange apple slices, overlapping in concentric circles, on purée.
  4. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter.
  5. Brush apples with butter
  6. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons sugar.
  7. Bake 45-50 minutes, until apples are tender when pierced with a knife.
  8. Cool tart on a wire rack 10 minutes.
  9. Remove side of pan and cool completely.
  10. When cool, brush apple slices with sieved preserves.
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