Tradition says that the Tarte Tatin was first created by accident at the Hotel Tatin in Lamotte-Beuvron, France in 1898.
The hotel was run by two sisters, Stéphanie and Caroline Tatin. There are conflicting stories concerning the tart's origin, but the predominant one is that Stéphanie Tatin, who did most of the cooking, was overworked one day.
She started to make a traditional apple pie but left the apples cooking in butter and sugar for too long. Smelling the burning, she tried to rescue the dish by putting the pastry base on top of the pan of apples, quickly finishing the cooking by putting the whole pan in the oven. After turning out the upside down tart, she was surprised to find how much the hotel guests appreciated the dessert.
An alternative version of the tart's origin is offered on the Brotherhood of the Tarte Tatin website, according to which Stéphanie baked a caramelised apple tart upside-down by mistake. Regardless she served her guests the unusual dish hot from the oven and a classic was born.
The Tarte became a signature dish at the Hotel Tatin and the recipe spread through the Sologne region. Its lasting fame is probably due to the restaurateur Louis Vaudable, who tasted the tart on a visit to Sologne and made the dessert a permanent fixture on the menu at his restaurant Maxim's of Paris.
Tarte Tatin has to be made with firm dessert apples: cooking apples will not do as they mulch down into a purée. In North America, Tarte Tatin is typically made with Golden Delicious apples, which are not the type used for American-style apple pie. Tarte Tatin can also be made with pears, peaches, pineapple, tomatoes, other fruit, or vegetables, such as onion. Wiki.
Apple Tarte Tatin
1 stick unsalted butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons cold water
1 pinch salt
1 2/3 cups plain all-purpose flour, sifted
Caramel Apple Filling:
1/2 stick unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar 10 apples (recommended: Granny Smiths or Reine de reinette)
2 tablespoons sugar, for sprinkling
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
To make the pastry, let the butter soften to room temperature and put it into a mixer on low speed. Pulse for 2 seconds before adding the egg followed by the water. Mix for a few seconds and then add the salt and the flour, keeping 2 tablespoons aside to add later in case the dough is too sticky. Work fast because the gluten in the flour makes the dough go elastic. Stop the mixer before the dough turns into a ball.
Flatten the pastry and shape a circle about 6 inches wide. Place the pastry on a plate, wrap it in plastic wrap and leave in the refrigerator for 1 hour minimum to 24 hours. This lets the gluten relax and when you roll out the pastry it stays flat.
Caramel Apple Filling: Cut the butter into little bits and scatter on a 10-inch baking dish. Shake the sugar over it and add 2 tablespoons of water to keep it from crystallizing. Caramelize the sugar by placing the dish on a medium heat. Meanwhile, peel the apples, cut in 2 and remove the core. Cut them into 4 big pieces. Once the butter and sugar have caramelized take the pan off the heat. Place the pieces of apple vertically on top of the caramel in the baking tin, taking care to fill the gaps with more pieces so they stick together in a solid mass. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sugar over the apples. Put the dish back on a heat diffuser for 15 minutes at a medium heat until the caramel starts bubbling up through the apples. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Roll the pastry out and place over the apples folding it in at the edges. Make 3 or 4 holes with a knife and 1 in the middle to let steam out when baking. Bake for 20 minutes and then let it rest for 15 minutes. It is important that you do this otherwise the apples will fall apart when you turn it over. Take a dinner plate and put it over the baking tin. Turn it over. Slowly remove the baking tin. Serve lukewarm with vanilla ice cream, heavy cream or whipped cream.
(Recipe by syntax606 )
Brandied Pear Tarte Tatin
* 3 or 4 ripe pears, peeled
* 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter (i like to use sweet cream butter)
* 1/4 cup sugar ( white or brown sugar)
* 1/4 tsp cinnamon
* 1 Tbsp. brandy (optional)
* 1 sheet of frozen puff pastry, defrosted
* 1 egg, beaten
* Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
* Place the rim of your metal pan over the puff pastry and cut the dough to fit its circular shape.
* Halve the pears lengthwise, remove seeds and slice into wedge shapes.
* Melt butter in frying pan on medium-high heat.
* Stir in the brandy, sugar and cinnamon.
* Arrange pear slices on the bottom (try not to overlap them too much).
* Cook the pears for about 10-15 minutes, or until the pears have carmelized and the sugar becomes dark and syrupy.
* Take pan off the heat and place the puff pastry sheet over the pears, tucking the edges down the sides.
* Make a few small holes in the center using a fork or a knife.
* Brush the surface with the beaten egg.
* Then place the whole pan in oven for about 20-25 minutes, until the pastry is crisp and golden brown.
* Allow the pan to cool on a flat surface.
* When cool, put a plate over the pan and then flip the pan upside down so that the pastry is on the bottom.
I like to serve this dish with a good, quality Vanilla Bean ice cream...
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