Tuesday, March 10, 2009

French Apple Tarts


Bonjour! We traveled to Paris this week and made French Apple Tarts. We began our journey with perfect tart dough, peeling apples on our perfect apple peel and core contraption and then assembling the tart... not to mention eating it.

We had delightful french music playing in the background and finished with a story "Ten Apples Up On Top".
I really enjoy watching and learning what makes the kids excited and happy.... rolling out the dough and coring the apples on our peeler were the highlights... and as always, seeing a finished product come to life. I was amazed at how many apples the children ate as they were peeling them.. this machine we have peels, cores and slices in a spiral fashion. The children were so excited about it and I was so happy to see them enjoying & eating the apples. It is very true that the more children are involved in the process of cooking and being involved in good foods the better they'll eat... it also helps when they have no other options, but whatever the reason... we had a great time and loved the tart.

It is very easy to make and delicous as well.... I hope you give it a try!

French Apple Tarts
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 TBSP sugar
12 TBSP (1 1/2 sticks ) butter - diced and placed in the freezer for 20 + minutes
1/2 cup cold water - from the refrigerator
The Apples
4 Granny Smith apples (or any other apple that is a harder apple)
1/2 cup sugar
4 TBSP very cold diced butter
2/3 cup apricot jam
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 TBSP water
For the pastry: place the flour, salt and sugar in a food processor and pulse to combine.
Add the frozen butter pieces and pulse until the butter mixture is in small bits or looks like peas. Slowly add the cold water 1 TBSP at a time until the dough is just combine. Do not over mix.
Dump the dough onto a floured surface, pat into a ball, wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. This will help the dough to be more elastic.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
Roll the dough into a rectangle or circle - making sure that it fits nicely onto your cooking sheet.
Mix the apricot jam, vanilla and water together and heat so that it is warm and easily spread.
Take a brush and glaze the top of your rolled out pastry with a light layer of the jam. Reserve the rest of the jam for the apple topping.
Peel and core the apples, slicing them in a consistent size of 1/4 inch thick. Place the apples on top of the tart in an overlapping pattern in a single layer. We choose to make a circular pattern with our apples. Sprinkle the sugar on top of the apples, dot with the cold butter and cook in the over for 40 to 45 minutes.
Once the tart is done, brush the tops of the apples and the exposed tart with the remaining jam.. eat, serve and enjoy by itself of with French Vanilla Ice Cream (what else?).

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