It’s fall, y’all! The Autumnal equinox marks the start of my favorite season. And what better way to bring in fall than with an apple tart?! There is no better way, I tell you.
With thoughts of worn-in jeans and threadbare sweaters on my mind, I set out to google up some recipes for apple tarts. In my usual fashion, I read through about five different variations, some of which were done in tart pans and others that were just done on baking sheets. I ended up not following the directions of any of them…shocking, I know.
What I did come up with was a mix of a rustic-style baking sheet tart done in a classic tart pan. Kind of. Or something. Minus nutmeg. What?
Here we go! First things first, the apples. I chose Granny Smith and Honeycrisp. I love me some Honeycrisp apples, but only wanted a couple for a little natural sweetness since I knew I would cut the processed sugar amount in the mix. And Granny Smiths are the classic choice for these sorts of things, so I did the majority of those.
For the dough, I whipped up the same tart dough that I used for the tomato tart I did earlier this summer. I will say, this was my best round of crust to date. It came together easily and actually looked right. Guess I’ve finally started to get the hang of it.
I left some dough hanging off around the edges instead of docking it because I wanted to wrap it over a little bit of the tart in the more rustic style. Kept the dough in the fridge while I prepared everything else.
Next up was coring, peeling, and slicing the apples. Six in total, there were four Granny Smiths and two Honeycrisp. All of them quite large, they came to a little over three pounds in total. The slices went into a saute pan that had melted butter, dark brown sugar, granulated sugar, lemon juice, and spices. The normal spices are cinnamon and nutmeg. I did not use nutmeg. Not for any reason other than I didn’t have any and I was not about to go back to the store. I substituted ginger for funsies. Simmered the apples a leetle too long because distractions. But that means they had more time to soak up more of the flavors…or so I’m saying. Pulled them from heat to cool before piling them into the dough with all their juices poured in as well. My idea about wrapping the dough along the outside of the tart ended up being super rustic because I didn’t roll it out evenly, but I was fine with that. It fit my impatient baking style. Funky-edged tart was ready for the oven.
This is when things got dicey because there were so many different cooking temps and times depending on the type of tart and since I followed none of the directions, I had to wing it. I went with a 400 degree oven on the second to bottom rack level, covered the edges with foil for the first 30 mins., then did another 20 without the foil so the crust could brown up.
When it was almost done baking, I melted two heaping tablespoons of apricot preserves in a saucepan to drizzle on top. Oh, the smell of cooking apples, sugar, and spices. This was definitely the way to ring in the fall season. And just look at this bubbly beauty…
Happy start of fall!
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter, chilled
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
2-3 tablespoons cold water
Mix the flour and salt in a bowl, cut the butter into cubes and add to flour. Use your fingers to break into the butter until it is crumbly.
Mix the egg with 2 tablespoons of the cold water and whip together. Make a well in the flour and add the beaten egg, mix until the dough holds together. Add the extra tablespoon of water if needed (I needed it).
Roll dough out on floured surface until it’s big enough to fit the tart pan and press in tightly. Set in fridge while you prepare the filling.
6 apples, about 3 pounds total
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons apricot preserves
Melt the butter over medium-high heat, add in the sugars, cook until melted (about two minutes), add in the lemon juice, spices, and apples. Cover and reduce heat. Cook just until tender.
Let cool before pouring into dough.
400 degree oven, second to bottom rack for 50-60 mins.
Drizzle melted apricot preserves on top and serve warm or room temp.