The classic French dessert tarte Tatin is simple to make and, with its combination of light golden puff pastry, soft juicy apples and delicious caramel, is a family favourite. It’s lovely served hot or cold with vanilla whipped cream or ice cream, or in the case of a pear tarte Tatin, with some lovely walnut or maple ice cream. This recipe makes four generous portions.
- 40g salted butter
- 100g white sugar
- 2–3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into eight wedges
- One sheet of ready-rolled butter puff pastry
- Smear the butter over the base and sides of a cold ovenproof frying pan (approximately 25–26cm diameter).
- Evenly distribute the sugar over the butter.
- Arrange the apples, side down, starting on the outside and working into the centre. They will reduce in volume slightly as they cook.
- If necessary, roll the pastry out slightly so that it covers the top of the pan. Cut off any excess, leaving enough to tuck down the inside of the pan. Make a small hole in the centre of the pastry.
- Put the frying pan onto the stove and cook on a medium heat until you see the juices at the edges of the pastry bubbling and turning amber. To get even caramelisation, gently swirl the pan over the stove element.
- Once the juices are evenly caramelized, remove the pan and put it in the centre of an oven pre-heated to 180˚C. Bake until the pastry is golden — approximately 15–20 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and leave cool.
- To turn the tart out, place the pan back on the stove over a gentle heat. Swirl the pan — this just loosens the toffee base. Put a large plate covered with a folded tea towel over the top of the pan, then quickly flip the plate and pan upside down, turning the tart out onto the plate.
- Let it cool slightly before serving.
About Paul Hoather
Paul started cooking in Nelson at 15, before heading overseas to the UK and Australia. Returning in the 1980s, he became head chef of restaurants including Champerelle and La Spaghettata, before opening the iconic White House in 1992. his food can be described as moder Kiwi influences from around the world. With a philosophy of freshness, he even grows herbs and lettuces on the restaurant roof. Hoather, his wife Louise, and their two dogs and avid hunters. Whether it is a week away trout fishing in Nelson or pheasant shooting up north, they both like nothing better than packing the tent and escaping to some secret spots.
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