tuesdays with dorie / baking with julie: french apple tart
This week’s recipe for Tuesdays with Dorie was a patisserie-worthy French Apple Tart.
Tarts are my favorite kind of dessert. I’m not clear on the difference between a tart and a pie, but somehow when something is baked in a tart pan with its fluted edges and served freestanding on a pretty plate, it tastes that much better to me. Come to think of it, I’ve baked most pie fillings in tart shells for years and couldn’t say the last time I actually made a pie.
This tart has a number of components, so it takes a while to make from official start to end. However, with advanced planning, it would be much quicker.
Once again, I found myself without an occasion to share and no need to eat an entire tart singlehandedly. All I can say is thank heavens for miniature baking dishes. Rather than make one 9-inch tart, I halved the recipe and made two 4-inch tarts with some leftover un-tarted ingredients.
As with any tart, you start with the flaky pastry crust. I didn’t use the book’s recipe for this one, preferring my favorite all-butter crust from Mark Bittman to one that contains shortening.
Next, you make an apple compote which is like a thick oven-roasted applesauce. Tart Granny Smith apples are roasted with sugar, cinnamon, flour, bread crumbs, and a bit of lemon until they are soft enough to mash up. The compote is used to fill the partially-baked tart shells.
Finally, the filled shells are topped with a circle of thinly sliced apples brushed with melted butter and sprinkled with sugar. The tart is baked until the apples are tender and start to burn on the edges. I was surprised that step took the full baking time for a whole tart even for my mini-tart.
The tarts looked very professional. I impressed myself. The contrast of the tender apple slices and the compote was delicious. If you didn’t know what was inside and were expecting all apple slices, it would be a pleasant apple-y surprise. French Apple Tart will definitely go on the list of desserts to make again. Next time, I hope my apples end up a little browner.
To read about other bakers’ tarts. follow their links from the LYL link for this recipe on the Tuesdays with Dorie site.