Caramel Apple Tart
Our delicious caramel combined with gorgeous apple roses in a sophisticated tart, ideal for entertaining with wow factor!
For the pastry:
Unsalted butter, cold and cubed
2 large eggs, yolks only
2-4 tbsp ice (ie very very cold!) water
For the filling and apple roses:
5-6 tart apples such as Braeburn
2-3 tbsp lemon juice
Step 1 of 8
In a food processor or a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour and sugar. Add in the cold butter and cut or blend in until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Ensure no large chunks of unblended butter remain or it will speckle the pastry when rolled out. Tip in the egg yolks and blend again until just combined. Add in the ice water a little at a time until the pastry dough comes together in clumps.
Step 2 of 8
Tip out the dough onto a clean work surface and gather it together. Squeeze it to bring together, try to avoid kneading and working it too much or the pastry will end up being tough. Shape the pastry into a long rectangle, wrap tightly in cling film and pop in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes. At this point, you can freeze the dough for another day, if desired.
Step 3 of 8
Once the dough has chilled, it is time to line the tart tin. First, preheat the oven to 180C/350F whilst preparing the pastry for baking. Dust a work surface with a little flour and roll out the pastry rectangle until an inch or so larger all round than the base of the pastry tin. Carefully lift the pastry and place it in the tin, pushing it into the corners and fluted edges. Using a sharp knife, trim off the excess pastry, gathering the offcuts and rewrapping them to store for another baking project. Prick the bottom of the pastry shell with a fork (this stops the bases puffing up and rising a lot when baking). Pop the tray into the freezer to chill and firm up for 15 minutes.
Step 4 of 8
When the pastry has chilled, line it with some crumpled up baking parchment and fill it with baking beans. Blind bake the shortcrust tart shell in the hot oven for 10 minutes, then remove the paper and baking beans. Bake again for 10-12 minutes until lightly golden and biscuity. Remove from the oven and leave in the tin to cool a little whilst preparing the rest of the ingredients.
Step 5 of 8
While the pastry is baking, prepare the apples. Core and thinly slice them, setting in a large bowl filled with water and a little lemon to prevent them browning. You can either slice them by hand (in which case I envy your knife skills!) or using a mandoline to get really thin slices. Once they are all sliced, drain the lemon water before covering the apples with boiling water and placing a lid on the bowl. Leave to sit for 20 minutes for the apples to soften and be pliable.
Step 6 of 8
Give the caramel a quick stir to loosen and get rid of any lumps, then pour over the shortcrust base, spreading out evenly in the tart shell.
Step 7 of 8
Once the apples are softened, drain them and pat dry. Lay a row of about five or six slices on the worktop, overlapping them about half way. Starting at one end of the row of apple slices, roll the slices up tightly to create an apple rose. Push the base of the apple rose into the tart, where the caramel should help hold it in place. Repeat with the remaining apple slices to completely fill the tart shell.
Step 8 of 8
Brush the tops of the roses with some lemon juice, to prevent them from browning too much in the oven. Bake the apple rose tart for 25-30 minutes until the caramel is gently bubbling and the apples are soft. Leave to cool completely in the tin before removing and slicing to serve. Enjoy!
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