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I find this famous upside down apple tart easier to make than homemade apple pie. Granny Smith apples are best suited for this recipe, the name for which has been abbreviated from its longer, original title "tarte des demoiselles Tatin" (the tart of two unmarried women named Tatin).
For the pastry dough:
First work on the pastry dough. Pulse the flour and sugar in a food processor. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles course crumbs. With motor running drizzle in cold water - enough until a dough ball forms.
Transfer dough to floured surface. Flatten into a disc, wrap in waxed paper or plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a 8 to 10" non-stick pan without a plastic handle (so it can go from stovetop to hot oven), melt the butter, stir in the sugar and cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves and deep, dark caramel forms, about 5 minutes.
Remove pan from the heat. Arrange apples in, keeping in mind that the way you arrange the first layer is what you will see when the tart is inverted before serving. Sprinkle with lemon zest.
Roll out chilled dough on a floured surface to the same width as your pan. Gently lay dough over apples.
Bake tart in hot oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until top crust is golden browned. Remove pan from oven and allow to cool (the caramel needs to cool enough that it hardens a bit with the apples, so it comes out of the pan easily).
Place a plate upside down on top the pan and invert tart onto plate. Serve warm or at room temperature with creme fraiche or whipped cream. Serves 1 to 6.
Subj: Tartt Tatin
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Subj: Tart Talin Recipe
From: email@example.com (Poli Brannan)
Thank you for the Tart Tatin recipe. I made it for our dinner tonight, I served a scoup of vanilla ice cream on each serving, my husband enjoyed the new dessert, it was delicious. I was impressed because I had a nice dessert which took less than an hour from start to finish.
Subj: Tart Tatin
I'm planning on making the Tart Tatin for an upcoming family dinner party ( my mom's French!). Can I make this recipe earlier in the day or is it best prepared shortly before serving? If I make it earlier in the day, should it be refrigerated? Should I reheat it prior to serving? And finally, is your recipe large enough for a 12 inch cast iron skillet?
the tart tatin can definately be made beforehand. I would still make it the day you plan to serve though to ensure freshness. I was first introduced to tart Tatin at a French restaurant in which I worked in California. The pastry chef made them (single serving sizes) early in the morning and we reheated them slightly before serving. Also, I do think that the recipe makes enough pastry dough for your 12" skillet.
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