There’s something special about making a dessert that just feels fancy. For us, that dessert is a classic French tarte tatin and, while it’s not difficult to put together, we get such satisfaction out of making it that it’s definitely one of our favorites. If apples aren’t your jam, you could just as easily (and deliciously) make a pear tatin, but really, they’re both excellent and you can’t go wrong!
While you do need nerves of steel for the moment when you’re inverting it, everything else comes together easily; plus, who cares if the final product turn out a little wonky? It’ll still taste amazing every time…
Apple Tarte Tatin
Yields 1 9-inch tart
- homemade or store-bought pastry dough
- 6-8 large apples (we use Granny Smith and Honeycrisp), peeled, cored, sliced horizontally
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 3 tablespoons apple cider
- 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- Preheat oven to 375º F.
- Place apple slices in a large bowl, drizzle with lemon juice. Toss to coat and set aside.
- Sprinkle sugar evenly into a large, oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat and stir in apple cider.
- Continue stirring and cook until sugar dissolves and mixture is smooth, then raise the heat and bring to a boil. Cook for another 10-12 minutes, or until liquid turns a deep amber color.
- Remove from heat and very carefully add butter. Mixture will froth and bubble up, so be careful not to let it splash you.
- Return to heat and add apple slices. Make sure to flip them over so they’re covered in sauce.
- Lower heat to medium-low and cook (stirring occasionally) for another 15 minutes.
- Season apples with cinnamon and nutmeg, then arrange apples so they look neat and pretty. (They will eventually be the top of the tarte.)
- Take your pie dough and roll it out on a lightly floured surface into a 10-inch circle with 1/4-inch thickness.
- Carefully transfer dough and lay it down on top of apples, trimming some of the excess dough and then tucking the remaining excess down into the inside of the skillet.
Note: use a fork so you don’t burn your hands.
- Place skillet on top of a rimmed baking sheet, to catch any spills, and place baking tray in the oven.
- Cook for 30-35 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes, then run a knife around the inside edge of skillet to loosen the crust.
- Place a large pyrex dish or serving plate on top of the skillet and, holding on to both the skillet and the plate, very carefully flip the skillet over, inverting the tarte onto the plate.
Note: it’s ok if some of the apples get a little out of place, just nudge everything back to where it’s supposed to be with a fork.
- Serve immediately with whipped cream, ice cream or creme fraiche and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from 12 Tomatoes