Travels in France – Tarte Tatin

For the next several weeks, we are printing some of our favorite recipes from restaurants in France.  Though not necessarily breakfast related,  we thought we’d take the opportunity to share these recipes with amateur French cooks everywhere!  Bon Appetit!

Made famous by two Tatin sisters, who ran a restaurant in the village of Lamotte-Beuvron early in the 1900s, this delicious caramelized upside-down apple tart is served in most bistros.

Upside-down French Apple Tart

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs

5-6 Golden Delicious or Granny Smith apples, about 2 1/4 lb. (1 Kg), peeled, cored and quartered
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup water
2/3 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Crème fraîche, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for serving

To make the pastry: In a blender or food processor, add all the ingredients and process until the dough begins to form a ball, about 20-seconds. Alternatively, put all ingredients in a medium bowl and use a fork to combine. Work with your fingertips until the mixture can be formed into a ball.  On a lightly floured board, knead the dough a few times until smooth.  Flatten the dough into a disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 45-minutes, or up to 2-hours.

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).  To make the filling: In a medium, heavy saucepan over high heat, combine the sugar and water.  Bring to a boil and cook until a deep golden brown.  Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and vanilla.  Quickly pour the caramel into a heavy ovenproof 9-inch (23-cm) skillet; let cool.  Cut the apples quartered in half lengthwise.  Arrange the apples in a neat, tight spiral over the caramel; top with all the remaining apples to form a single layer.  The apples will shrink down when they cook so be generous.  Bake in a preheated oven fore 45-minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into a 10-inch (25-cm) circle.  Lay the pastry over the apples, tucking the dough down into the skillet. around the edges..  Cut 4 vent holes in the center of the dough and bake for about 25-minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.  Carefully remove from the oven and let cool.  Place a serving plate on top of the skillet and invert to unmold the tart, giving the bottom a whack to release the apples.

Serve warm withCrème fraîche, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Serves 8 to 10

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