apple tarte tatin – flopped

by Michelle

Apple Tarte Tatin

APPLE TARTE TATIN should be easier than pie…

Whenever I neglect to pay attention to the details of someone else’s recipe, I usually find myself in the weeds. Today, I was in deep! I wanted to whip up a yummy dessert, for dinner, so I grabbed some commercial puff pastry and a couple of apples to throw an apple tarte tatin together. If you’ve never made one, don’t be dazzled by the name. It’s a simple rustic upside down tart. With the use of commercial puff pastry, you can have it on the table in under an hour. Unfortunately, smarty pants me decides to day dream while I’m sectioning the apples. Instead of using the size appropriate to caramelize for my tatin, I cut the apples as if I was baking a pie. On top of that, I arbitrarily increased my baking time.

Nothing gave my doomed tart away, while it was in the oven. I couldn’t wait to photograph the crisp flakey pastry dripping with golden caramelized apples. With ill-placed confidence, I inverted my tarte anticipating gooey golden apples. Instead, a naked pastry crust stared up at me. My caramelized apples were stuck to the cast iron skillet. Cut too thin, they over-cooked to a mush. The additional oven time turned my lovely caramel into taffy. My only save was the crispy crust. I scraped the decimated apple slices along with the over cooked caramel onto the crust then offered it for dessert with a huge bowl up whipped cream.

Moral of the story – with enough whipped cream you can eat anything! I’m kidding. You have to use your common sense when you cook. Cooking times, oven temperatures, instructions and procedures are provided for a reason. If you decided to play around with any of the recipe, think long and hard as to how your adaptations will effect everything else.

Instead of sharing my flopped attempt recipe pictured below, I’m sharing the tarte tatin recipe that I did last fall. It worked perfectly! If you want to see what your final tarte will look like go here.

Apple Tarte Tatin


Preheat oven 425*F

Apple Tarte Tatin
1 piece of frozen puff pastry, defrosted and rolled out to 1/8” thickness slightly larger than skillet

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup butter

4 apples, unpeeled, cored and fan cut*
*To fan the pears, place core-side down on a cutting board and cut into 5 lengthwise slices, leaving the stem end attached.

Apple Tarte Tatin
Place a heavy 9” cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
Add butter, when melted add sugar stirring until it turns deep golden – about 5 minutes
Remove from the heat.
Arrange cut side up close together in the skillet, fanning them slightly.
Cover the apples with the pastry tucking in the edges so that you don‘t lose any caramel.
Make several slits in the top and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden.
Remove from oven onto a cooling rack for 5 minutes then carefully invert the tarte tatin onto a platter while it’s still warm.

Apple Tarte Tatin

THE LOVE: Make sure your serving platter is larger than the skillet so that you don’t spill any of the hot caramel on your hands! I’m using my mother voice…

print recipe

Thanks for reading.