Classic Apple Tarte Tatin with Cognac and Crème Fraîche
Here we have the irresistible color and flavors of Autumn on a plate. Top slices of just-from-the-oven apple tarte tatin with a dollop of crème fraîche – its slightly sour, nutty flavor and velvety texture make it the perfect accompaniment. Serve alongside a warmed snifter of Cognac and it would be difficult to find a better dessert to entertain as the weather cools and the leaves turn…
Classic Apple Tarte Tatin Recipe
6 T. sugar
6 T. butter
5 – 6 baking apples such as honeycrisp
2 T. cognac (or lemon juice)
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
Heat butter and sugar in a tarte tatin pan or oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat until caramelized.
Meanwhile, peel apples then slice in half horizontally. Remove the cores.
Add apples to the pan fitting them in as tightly as possible. Splash Cognac over the fruit, then cook an additional 5 minutes.
Cut a sheet of puff pastry into a round slightly larger than the pan. Turn off the heat and lay the pastry over the fruit. Tuck the edges under the fruit and cut a few steam holes in the pastry.
Bake in a 400° oven on the top shelf for 20 + minutes or until the pastry is puffed and golden brown. Allow to rest for 5 minutes Loosen the edges with a small heat-resistant spatula then invert onto a platter.
Serve immediately by slicing into wedges and topping with a dollop of crème fraîche.
Apple Tarte Tatin History
Stéphanie Tatin’s inadvertent “mistake” in cooking an apple pie up-side-down has become a part of culinary history.
Back in the late 1800′s in France’s Loire Valley, two sisters took over the duties of running L’Hotel Tatin after the death of their father. Caroline managed the business side of the hotel and her older sister Stéphanie ran the kitchens. While she was an accomplished cook, Stéphanie also had a reputation for being a bit scatterbrained.
Her apple tart was already very popular with the local hunters. Legend has it that on this particular day, she cooked her apples as usual, in sugar and butter but something went wrong. It is unclear whether she was distracted and cooked the apples so long that they became deeply caramelized, or that she just forgot to line her pan with pastry dough.
Without time to start over, Stéphanie placed a sheet of pastry on top of the darkened apples and put the pan in the oven. To make it appear like her everyday tart, once cooked, she inverted it onto a platter and served it hot. The guests loved the light flaky crust and the deeply caramelized apples. It was an instant hit and went on to become the hotel’s signature dish.
Years later, her tart made it onto the menu of the famous Parisian restaurant Maxim’s where it was called La Tarte des Demoiselles Tatin (the tart of two unmarried women named Tatin). Eventually Stéphanie’s recipe of just four components – apples, sugar, butter, pastry dough – baked in an unconventional manner, became world-famous.
#FallFest is a season long franchise where Food Network editors team up with bloggers to share recipes about everyone’s favorite autumn dishes. You might enjoy taking a peek at other APPLE recipes from some fabulous bloggers below… and be sure to follow our very popular Pinterest Board with over 325,000 followers called Let’s Pull Up A Chair!
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