Few things are as delicious as a hot Apple Tarte Tatin straight from the oven. This French dessert is rumoured to have been created by accident. It is said Stephanie Tatin was creating an Apple pie, upon realising she was burning the apples in the butter she placed the pastry base on top, finishing the pie in the oven in an attempt to save the dessert. The patrons of the restaurant thoroughly enjoyed the dessert, and it became a staple on the menu at the Hotel Tatin.
Chilled Puff Pastry
8 Granny Smith apples
1 tsp vanilla bean paste (optional)
30 g unsalted butter, melted
100g caster sugar
50g unsalted butter, cut into 1cm cubes
Roll out the puff pastry to 2mm thick and cut a circle 1cm wider than the diameter of the baking dish being used. Rest the pastry on a lined baking tray and place back into the fridge for later. Line the baking dish with baking paper.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
Apples. Peel, core and quarter the apples, and round off the sharp edges for a tighter fit. I like to arrange the apples in the pan, working from the outside in and trim the apples where needed for the best fit. Remove the apples from the pan.
Caramel. Add the sugar and water to a frying pan, stir until the sugar is dissolved. Turn the heat to medium, the sugar will start to bubble as it cooks, do not stir, instead swirl the pan so the liquid colours evenly. When the bubbles start to disappear and the caramel is a light-amber, add the butter cubes one at a time whisking between each addition. When all of the butter has been added, pour the caramel into the paper-lined baking dish. Leave the caramel to cool, about 5 minutes, and the arrange the apples in the pan.
First bake. Mix the vanilla paste and melted butter in a small bowl and brush the exposed apple flesh. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the pan and leave the apples and pan to cool completely.
Second bake. Collect the pastry from the fridge and place it onto of the fruit. Tuck the pastry between the apples and the dish’s side using the back of a spoon. To make the egg wash, whisk the egg with a few drops of boiling water. Brush the surface of the pastry with the egg wash. Make one small steam hole on the centre of the dish. Place back into the oven for up to 40 minutes, the pastry should be risen and the the caramel is bubbling up the sides of the dish.
When done, remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before inverting onto a plate. Remove the baking paper, careful not to bake the apple. Serve with Ice cream.
If you're in Sydney I suggest serving it with either Mapo’s Fior di latte gelato, or their Pepe Saya salted caramel gelato.