September 30, 2012

tarte tatin

One of the food blogs I follow, Gilt Taste, recently put out a recipe for Tarte Tatin. I'd never heard of it before, but it's like an upside down apple pie (and plus it's French) so I jumped at the chance to make it for a dinner party.

The hardest part was finding an oven-safe pan. There are hundreds of them at school, but at home all the pans had plastic handles. And the cast iron was too big, so I resorted to unscrewing the handle off of one of the existing pans.

oven-proofing pan

After that was the dilemma of making dough without a food processor (well, I have one but it's tiny). Thankfully, at one of my summer stages I'd learned to cut butter into dough by using a cheese grater, because they didn't have a food processor either.

cutting butter into flour

Between the cheese grater and breaking up the butter curls by hand, I got the butter mixed in pretty well.

hand-mixed flour

With some cold water and kneading, the dough was shaped into a round, wrapped in plastic and put in the fridge to chill.

crust dough

Next came the apples. Golden delicious from the farmer's market by work.

golden delicious apples

Once cut and quartered, I was able to fit five in the 9" pan.

apples, cut

Then I cooked the combination of butter, sugar and cinnamon stick.

butter, sugar, cinnamon

Took it off the heat once it started turning brown.

simmering to caramel

On top I repositioned the apple quarters, now cored (but not peeled, since I didn't have a good peeler at home).

cored apples, arranged

While the apples were cooking I took the dough out and rolled it to the dimensions of the pan. I don't own a rolling pin so I used a bottle of PAM. It works pretty well (although in my previous post you'll see PVC pipe, that works even better).

rolling out crust dough

The apples cooking in the cinnamon caramel is one of the best smells that can fill your kitchen. I turned rotated each slice 180ยบ for even cooking, but you don't have to.

cooked apples

Once the apples were done I covered the pan and put it in the oven. When it finished baking I wrapped it in towels and took it to the dinner party.

tarte before baking

There, I had to pop the tarte back into the oven, so the caramel could soften a bit in order for the all-important flipping of the tarte to happen.

tarte after baking

I was nervous, but with the plate on the pan, I flipped in one motion and the tarte came out. It would probably have been prettier with the apples peeled, but it tasted pretty good (with vanilla ice cream!).

tarte tatin

Not a bad way to make use of some apples (or other fruit) you have lying around. Although I'd still prefer apple pie :)

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