Normande Apple Tart

Ingredients

Pastry ( pâte sucrée ):

6 oz. (175g) plain flour

3 oz. (85g) unsalted butter, soft

3 egg yolks

3 oz. (85g) caster sugar

3-4 drops of vanilla extract

pinch of salt

Frangipane:

6 oz. (175g) ground almonds

6 oz. (175g) unsalted butter, soft

5 oz. (125g) caster sugar

3 eggs

1 1/2 tablespoons of plain flour

1 tablespoon Calvados or Kirsch

2 drops of almond extract

3 small apples – Cox or Braeburn will do

Glaze:

apricot jam

lemon juice

Makes one large tart (22cm flan tin) or 4 smaller tarts.

Serves 4.

Method

A food processor can be used making this pastry, but try not to overwork it or the pastry will become tough.

3 – 4 apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices, just before baking

Sift the flour and put in your food processor, add all the other ingredients, mix in short little bursts. Keep going until pastry forms a ball, do not overwork it or the pastry will become tough, wrap and place in refrigerator for 1 hour

Roll out and put into a greased 8”flan dish (loose bottom is best ), the pastry is best used when chilled and is prone to breaking up, just press together again, it will not spoil the end result. Return pastry to refrigerator again for 30 minutes

Blind bake for 7- 8 minutes (place greaseproof paper over the pastry and fill with beans or baking beans ). When done, remove the baking beans and paper,

Bake for a further 5-7 minutes, until light golden brown.

To make the frangipane:

Mix the butter and sugar until nice and creamy add the eggs, ground almonds, flour, Calvados and almond extract, and mix.

Fill the pastry case with the frangipane but not to the top of the pastry. Place the sliced apples evenly on top

Bake at 200 C for 30 – 40 minutes, remove and leave to cool, remove from baking dish. Dust with icing sugar and with a cooks blowtorch caramelise the sugar. Then brush the glaze over the top.

To make the Glaze:

Put 2 tablespoons of the jam, juice of a lemon and a dash of water in a pan, heat gently on the stove until it melts. You can push through a sieve or leave the glaze rustic.

You can make a stock of the glaze by using a whole jar of jam and juice of 5 lemons. Return the finished mix to the jar and keep in the fridge. Re –heat the quantity required adding lemon juice or water as needed to get the thickness of the glaze right.

Note:

You can add a pear liqueur (Xanthe) to the frangipane mixture and use pears instead of apples. Lovely dessert!

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