Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Tarte Tatin


This classic French apple tart is Wolfgang's recipe, one he refers to as "Easy Tarte Tatin". If you know me at all you know this is my idea of the ultimate dessert. Sadly, Mon Ami Gabi has removed it from their menu, although they promise it will be an occasional 'special.' Hope so.

If you haven't discovered Pepperidge Farm puff pastry I urge you to run to the frozen food aisle at your local grocery store and buy a box. It's a freezer staple. It means you can always make a napolean or a tarte tatin because it's just that amazing. If you're adventurous you can give it a shot, like I did here, but I promise you the store bought version is absolutely perfect. Also, as much as we loved that Danish braid, and we did, I have never made it again. Just saying. It's versatile (they make it in pastry shells) and perfect.

1 stick unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
10 Golden Delicious apples
2 T. lemon juice
1 9-inch circle pre-baked puff pastry
Vanilla ice cream

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a 9-inch ovenproof skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Stir in 1/2 cup of the sugar and cook, stirring continuously, until it turns light golden brown. Remove from the heat and set aside. Peel, core, and quarter the apples. In a nonreactive bowl, toss together the apples and lemon juice. Arrange the apple quarters, rounded sides down, in the pan in a flowerlike pattern, filling in the gaps with more apples placed curved side up. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup sugar over the apples. Cook over medium heat until the apples start to brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the skillet to the oven and cook until the apples are tender, 20 to 30 minutes more. Remove the pan from the heat and let the apples cool to room temperature. Before serving, preheat the broiler. Return the pan to medium heat, just until the caramel softens enough for the apples to loosen. Remove the pan from the heat and top the apples with the pre-baked pastry. Invert a round heatproof serving platter over the pastry and, carefully holding the skillet and the platter together, invert them; then, lift off the skillet to unmold the tart onto the platter. If any apples stick to the skillet or become dislodged, replace them on the tart. Sprinkle the top with the remaining sugar and caramelize it briefly under the broiler. Cut the tart into wedges and serve with vanilla ice cream. Serves 6 to 8.

Anyone can make this!

This week's Friday Seminary treat? Whoopie pies, per a special request. I love a special request.

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