Apple Tart Tatin

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Apple Tart Tatin

Photo: Natalie Levin

I really like apple desserts, and every year, around this time of the year, I celebrate this love with a variety of apple desserts and cakes. Any form of baked apples is always welcome, but my most favorite is apple Tart Tatin.

Traditional apple Tart Tatin is made with puff pastry, but making it with short crust pastry is easy and so delicious. This combination of caramel, soft apples, over a crispy, golden dough is a treat, and served hot with vanilla ice cream is a winner.

Apple Tart Tatin

Photo: Natalie Levin

Apple Tart Tatin

For the dough:

  • 210 grams (1 ½ cups) all-purpose flour
  • 20 grams (2 tbsp.) sugar
  • 100 grams (1/2 cup) cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 egg

For the caramel:

  • 200 grams (1 cup) sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 50 grams (1/4 cup) butter

For the apples:

  • 8 Granny Smith apples
  • Juice of a whole lemon
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. Calvados liqueur or brandy


  1. In a food processor with a steel blade, put flour, sugar, butter, vanilla and salt and blend into a crumbly mixture.
  2. Add the egg and continue to blend until large chunks of dough are formed.
  3. Bring the dough together with your hands and form a disc shape.
  4. Wrap in plastic wrap and cool for about an hour in the refrigerator.
  5. After the dough has cooled, roll it on a floured work surface to about ½ cm thick and cut-out 30 cm circle.
  6. Pierce the dough with a fork and keep in the refrigerator for about half an hour until use.


  1. Place the sugar and salt in the pan in a uniform thin layer and cook into a light caramel.
  2. Add the butter and stir until it is completely assimilated and melted into the caramel.
  3. Cook until the caramel gets an amber color and turn off the flame.
  4. Cool the caramel for 10-15 minutes at room temperature in the pan. Meanwhile, prepare the apples.


  1. Peel the apples and remove the core.
  2. Cut the apples into quarters and transfer to a large bowl.
  3. Add lemon juice, vanilla and calvados and mix well with your hands until all the apples are coated with the mixture.

Assembly and baking:

  1. Preheat oven to 185c degrees.
  2. Arrange the quarter of the apples on the caramel in the shape of a dense fan.
  3. Gently place the circle of rolled dough over the apples, and push the edges into the sides of the pan.
  4. Bake the Tart Tatin for 25-30 minutes, until the dough is golden and a knife inserted into the apples shows that they are soft.
  5. Cool the tart for 2-3 minutes at room temperature, then carefully turn it over a serving dish.
  6. Serve hot with vanilla ice cream or a little crème fraiche.
  • You can use other fruits instead of apples, such as pears, peaches, apricots, nectarines etc.
  • Do not skip the salt in the caramel, as it’s important to balance the sweetness of the tart.
  • The tart is at its best on the day of preparation, but can be kept in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
  • Calvados is an apple brandy, which can be obtained at any alcohol store.
  • It is recommended to purchase little more apples than what is written in the recipe, because their size changes, so there can be slight changes in the exact amount used.

Apple Tart Tatin

Photo: Natalie Levin