I just love making desert for my self or for friends. It’s one of my favorite treats to make with either left over fruit or planned ahead, as a show stopper at the end of an amazing dinner. I had some left over apples from my foray through the Union Square Market last week and could not resist making this desert for my self. It is simple and the flavors just pop from the caramelized sugar and butter.
Peel and core 6 to 7 medium sized apples of your choice. I used Braeburn’s, Fuji’s, Roma’s and Honey Crisp. After coring and peeling the apples, slice them in half and slice them in half once again, or leave them halved for a bulkier classic tart. In a large oven proof skillet (I use a Lodge cast iron 10″ skillet), melt 3/4 cup of sugar (white) and 3/4 of a stick of butter. Melt the sugar and butter and allow to come to a caramel color and consistency. (Be careful not to burn the sugar and butter). Add the apples, cut side down and brown the apples lightly or till slightly caramelized. Sprinkle with a bit of cinnamon powder (optional). Classic tarte tatin, does not call for cinnamon, but I like it and enjoy the added flavor. Turn the apple slices over to the rounded tops or side, and cook for an additional 4 or 5 minutes till caramelized slightly. I also, add a pinch of salt and freshly cracked milled pepper as I believe it also lends a bit of flavor. Once cooked, cover the apples with your pie dough. You can make your own, but you can take a short cut like I do and just use one Pillsbury pie crust. It works perfectly for this recipe. Be sure to tuck the edge of the pie crust along the inside of the skillet edge to form a nice mold for the tart, when you unmold. Bake the tarte tatin at 400 degrees till the crust is golden brown, about 30 minutes. Unmold the tart by placing a dinner or serving plate over the skillet and carefully flipping the tart onto the plate. Caution must be taken to not burn your self in the process of unmolding as hot cooked sugar can escape and cause a burn. Take your time unmolding, but keep in mind that the best time to keep the tart in tact, is to unmold while it is still hot or by baking in a non stick oven proof skillet, like a Capholon or Staub Cast Iron Fry Pan. If allowed to cool first, the chances are that the tart will break while unmolding.