Apple Tart

Time for recipe #2 from my Julia Child weekend: Apple Tart (Tart Aux Pommes).  This was my first time making a tart of any kind and I’d say it was a success.  My tart shell didn’t turn out super pretty, but it tasted darn good…so who cares?  The apple tart is a wonderful fall treat, you must try it!

Apple Tart                          Print Recipe Here

From Julia Child

For 8 People


For a 9-to 10 inch shell

1 1/3 cups flour
3– 7 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon double action baking powder
7 tablespoons fat: 5 Tb chilled butter and
2 tablespoons chilled vegetable shortening
1 egg beaten with 1 tsp. water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Tart:

A 10-inch partially cooked pastry shell
4 pounds firm cooking apples
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup apricot preserves, forced through a sieve
1/4 cup apple brandy, rum or cognac; or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Zest of 1 lemon


For a 9 to 10 inch shell by hand

Combine the flour, sugar, butter, vegetable shortening, and baking powder in a large mixing bowl by rubbing with the tips of your fingers to fully combine the fat with the dry ingredients. Do this quickly until the mixture resembles oatmeal flakes, do not overmix. Add the water and continue to blend with your fingertips until the dough comes together (add up to 1 more tablespoon of water if needed). Form a ball, it will be pliable but no longer sticky.

for a 9 to 10 inch shell in the food processor

Add all of the dry ingredients for the dough to the bowl of a food processor with a steel blade. Cube the butter into 3/8″ pieces and add to the bowl of the food processor with the chilled shortening. Pulse the machine 4-5 times. With the machine turned on, pour in a scant 1/2 cup of iced water. Dribble in more water, if necessary. Stop when the dough comes together and form a ball.

how to Fraisage

Turn dough ball onto a lightly floured surface. Rapidly press the dough away from you, firmly and quickly, with the heel of your hand. You do not want the dough to warm too much, so do not use the palm of your hand.6 inches.

Use a spatula to gather all of the dough together and then knead into a ball. Sprinkle the pastry dough with flour and wrap it in waxed paper. Freeze the dough for 1 hour or refrigerate for 2 hours (up to 24 hours). You can prepare the dough ahead of time, 2-3 days before using or freeze for several weeks. Make sure to store covered in wax paper in a plastic bag.

Rolling out the dough

You need to work quickly when you roll out the dough as to not soften the butter in the dough too much. On a lightly floured surface knead the dough to soften a bit, enough to roll out (beat with a rolling pin, if necessary). Flour the top of the dough and use a rolling pin to a circle at least 2″  larger than your tart pan and 1/8″ thick (flour along the way, if needed).

Immediately transfer the tart crust to a buttered tart pan. Press lightly into the pan. Trim off excess dough. Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork, in 1/2″ intervals.

Line the pastry with foil and weigh it down with dry beans, this will help prevent the pastry from puffing up too much while baking. (If you aren’t baking immediately, refrigerate.)

To partially bake the pastry, place on the middle rack of a 400 degree preheated oven and bake for 8-9 minutes. Remove from oven and remove the foil and beans. Prick the pastry bottom again. Return to oven and bake for an additional 2-3 minutes. As soon as the pastry starts to turn color and shrink inside the pan, remove from oven.

For the Tart

Wash, peel, core, and quarter the apples and slice into 1/8″ slices, you’ll want 3 cups of apples.  Toss the apples with lemon juice and sugar in a bowl, these will be the apples for the top of your tart.

Continue to wash, peel, core, quarter, and roughly slice the remaining apples (about 8 cups). Place apples in a pan and cook over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until tender. Beat in the apricot preserves, vanilla, sugar, and 3 tablespoons of butter. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Stir until the apples become a thick applesauce.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Spread the applesauce mixture into the prepared tart shell. Cover with the sliced apples in a pattern.
Bake in preheated oven (on oven rack in the upper third of the oven). Bake for 30 minutes until the sliced apples on top are starting to lightly brown and have become tender. Remove from oven and place on rack. Glaze with apricot glaze. The tart can be served warm or cold. Enjoy!

Add your flour, sugar, and salt into your mixing bowl. (I used the food processor method).

After combining the ingredients, add your cold butter and chilled shortening.

After pulsing 4 or 5 times, turn the machine on and add your ice water all at once.

Pulse several times until the dough begins to mass.

Place the dough on a lightly floured surface, and with the heel of one hand, rapidly press the dough by two-spoonful bits down on the board away from you in a firm, quick smear of about 6 inches.

Knead it briefly into a fairly smooth round ball. Sprinkle with flour and wrap it in waxed paper (in my case, plastic wrap). Freeze for about 1 hour.

While your dough is in the freezer, take pictures of your apples. Ok, you don’t have to do this step…

Place the dough on a lightly floured surface.

Beat the dough with your pin to soften it. This is fun.

Roll out.

Place in your tart pan.

Press dough into pan, clean up the edges, press a knife around the edges for a decorative touch, and prick the inside with a fork.

I used these handy pie beads instead of dried beans.

Place foil on top of your tart crust and add your dried beans or pie beads.

Bake for 8 to 9 minutes and take off the foil with beads. Prick the crust again.

Bake for 2 or 3 minutes more. Now you have a partially baked tart shell!

Quarter, core, and peel your apples. Cut enough to make 3 cups into 1/8-inch lengthwise slices and toss them in a bowl with lemon juice and sugar.

Cut the rest into rough slices. Place in covered pan and cook for about 20 minutes.

Add apricot preserves, vanilla, sugar, 3 tablespoons of butter, and cinnamon (this is optional).

Bring to a boil, stirring, until apple sauce is thick enough to hold in a mass in the spoon.

Pour applesauce on top of your tart shell.

Place the reserved apple slices in a spiral pattern on top of the chunky apple sauce.

Bake for 30 minutes and you’re done!

Bon Appétit!

2 thoughts on “Apple Tart

  1. Pingback: Top 12 Recipes of 2012 | Just a Spoonful of Sugar

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