An elevated addition to any high tea menu that showcases the best of classic French tradition. A showstopper with minimal effort.
- 400g sweet shortcrust pastry, chilled
- 80g butter
- 4 medium pink lady apples
- 1 lemon
- 60g caster sugar
- 3 tablespoons almond meal
(or ground pistachios)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup apricot or plum jam
- 1 teaspoon rose water (optional)
1. To prepare the pastry
Using 20g of butter, grease a 22cm tart tin with a removable base. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry dough until about 4mm thick. Carefully lift the pastry and lay it over the tart tin. Ease the pastry into the greased tin, gently pressing into the base and sides. Using a sharp knife, trim the edges and rest in the freezer for 30 minutes.
2. To bake the pastry
Preheat the oven to 200˚C. Remove the chilled pastry shell from the freezer and prick the base a couple of times with a sharp knife. Line with baking paper and then fill with pastry weights. Blind bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, and remove the baking paper and weights. Return the pastry shell to the oven for a further 5-10 minutes, until the dough is dry and lightly golden. Remove from the oven and reduce the temperature to 170˚C. Set aside to cool while you prepare the apples.
3. To prepare the apples
Working with 1 apple at a time, stand the apple upright and slice ‘cheeks’ away from the core – you should end up with 3 pieces and a triangle core for each apple. Discard the core. One you have separated the apple cheeks, use a mandolin or a very sharp knife to cut them into 3mm thick half moon slices. Squeeze lemon juice over the apple slices as you go to keep each slice fresh and reduce discolouration.
4. To build the tart
Sprinkle 30g of caster sugar and the almond meal in the base of the pastry shell. Starting from the outside edge and working inwards, arrange the apple slices cut side down in tight, overlapping, concentric circles (saving the smaller, thinner pieces for the centre). Once the apples are arranged, sprinkle the remaining sugar and salt over the top. Cut the butter into small pieces and dot these over the apple rose.
5. To bake
Bake for 40 minutes, until the crust is a deep golden brown and the apples are cooked and just beginning to caramelise. If the crust is browning too quickly, cover the edges with foil. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes while you prepare the glaze.
6. To serve
In a small saucepan, heat the jam and rosewater with a teaspoon or two of water until spreadable. Using a pastry brush, gently paint the apple rose with the jam glaze. Serve with cream or ice cream.
- When cooking the tart, turn off the fan-forced function if possible. Using a conventional oven setting will reduce risk of over browning the fruit.
- If desired, you could add a layer of crème patisserie under the apples for something extra special.
As seen in autumn/winter 2023