Thursday, December 31, 2009
Apple Frangipane Tart

I have been dying to try my hand at frangipane ever since I purchased almond meal from the Ferry Building in San Francisco in the middle of autumn. When I started planning my Christmas baking lineup I was faced with the difficulty of creating desserts that would not only satisfy my ambitions as a baker but would also be accessible to people of different ages, with tastes ranging from simple to adventurous. As suggestions started pouring in, I started to see that apple would have to make some sort of appearance. But I was determined to present it in a not so traditional way. That's when an apple frangipane tart came to mind and I was instantly sold on the idea, the days approaching Christmas Eve were filled with images and days dreams of a beautiful, seemingly intricate, yet deceptively simple tart in bloom. If dessert is my life, would it be appropriate to say that, in my opinion, dessert (life) should imitate art?

Anyways, enough with the idealistic blah blah blah. End result: delicious and devoured.

Apple Frangipane Tart

makes a 9-10 inch tart

Pate Sucrée:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 large egg, lightly beaten

In a mixer, beat butter until softened. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add the beaten egg, beating just until incorporated. Don't overmix or butter will separate and lighten in color. Add the flour and salt and mix until a ball is formed. Don't overwork or pastry will be hard when baked.

Flatten dough into disk, cover in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20 minutes or until firm.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to about an inch larger than the size of the tart pan. Roll out from the center to maintain a uniform thickness, about 1/4-inch thick. Take rolling pin and gently wrap dough over pin, dust off excess flour, and transfer to top of pan. Gently lay dough down, careful not to stretch dough, or dough will shrink down. Press dough into sides of pan, remove excess dough from edges by rolling pin over top of tart pan. Prick bottom of dough with a fork, cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

At this point you can bake your crust for 20 to 25 minutes at 400 degrees F with pie weights or dried bean atop dough. Instead, I opted to just fill the uncooked crust immediately and just bake the completed tart.

Frangipane Cream:
1 stick (115 gr) butter, softened
1/2 cup (100 gr) granulated sugar
1 cup (100 gr) ground almond
seeds from one vanilla bean or 2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract
2 eggs
1/4 cup (60gr) heavy cream

Place the butter, sugar, almond powder, vanilla bean seeds and the eggs in a large bowl and whisk until smooth (can also be done in a food processor). Add the cream but stir in it instead of whisking not to emulsify it or it will rise while baking. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Assembling the tart:
6-8 Apples, peeled, cored, halved, and thinly sliced (keep in cold water; I used Golden Delicious)
4 tablespoons cinnamon-sugar mixture

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Gently spread frangipane over bottom of crust. Beginning at the outside, place apples slices perpendicular to the bottom, halfway overlapping each slice. For every new layer, place apple slices alternatively to the layer before. Cut smaller apple slices to fit in center of tart.

Sprinkle apples with a cinnamon-sugar mixture. Bake until crust is a deep golden brown and apples are cooked through, about 45 minutes to an hour. Remove from oven and cool before serving.



Chicho said...

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