Apple Tarte Tartin
With 42 bushes of Heirloom Newtown Pipin Apples you have to ask – what to do with so many apples? We make apple butter, caramelized apple preserves, a french apple mustard and an apple & onion relish – but what I like most with the abundance of apples is the tarte tartin that I make for the holidays.
Quite simply, a decadent desert – sweet with caramel dripping off tart apples. Just enough work at the end of a dinner to delight both family and friends, filling the house with a lovely fragrance of baking apples, buttery caramel and warm winter spices.
I make the pie crust in advance so you only need to attend to the apples and the caramel just before your dinner.
Apple Tarte Tartin
8 to 9 Newton Pipin apples or any variety that you enjoy – try some thing tart like a Winesap.
1 Lemon for juice & zest
4 oz Unsalted butter – we use Ronnybrook – remember the better the butter the better the caramel
1/2 cup sugar
Optional Spices i.e. nutmeg, cinnamon, sea salt and or vanilla
1 All Butter Pie Crust (See separate post)
1 Cast iron skillet or any pan that can be used to cook in a hot oven
1 – Preheat oven to 425 degrees
2 – Zest the lemon – reserve
3 – Juice the lemon and add it to a bowl of water – this is your acidulated water.
4 – Peel core and slice the apples adding the slices to acidulated water to keep from browning – reserve.
5 -Spread the butter on the bottom of the skillet – sprinkling the sugar on top. cook to a syrup.
6 – Add the zest of the lemon. I also add vanilla and nutmeg but cinnamon is also nice.
As an option you can now add 1/2 t sea salt if your prefer a salted caramel.
7 – Drain the apples on paper towels to remove as much moisture as possible. Pat dry with a second towel.
8- Working quickly make concentric circles of apples around the skillet. Layer the apples in two or three neat layers – mounding to the middle.
9 – Cover the apples and cook on top of the stove over a moderate heat undisturbed for 20 minutes until the apples are golden and the juices are bubbling.
10 – Remove the cover and move the apples to the oven and cook for another 20 minutes – this will help to reduce the liquid and dry out the apples allowing them to caramelize.
11 -While the apples are baking, roll out the pie crust on a floured surface – sized just about 2 “ larger than your skillet/pan.
12 – remove the apples from the oven and lay the crust over the apples – trimming and tucking the pie crust to firmly hold the apples.
13 – Bake for another 20 to 30 minutes or until the crust is golden.
14 – Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes. Undisturbed.
15 – Put a platter over the skillet – inverting the tart onto the platter. Replace any apples that have stuck to the skillet and serve immediately.