We convinced our pastry chef Danielle to part with this fabulous recipe for an autumn-inspired Apple Tart. She recommends using mouth-puckering Granny Smiths, as this is the perfect complement to the sweet almond Frangipane filling. The quantities below make either one large 9-inch tart, or 6 darling 4-inch tartlets. You can find mini tartlet pans at Sur La Table or other specialty stores. Enjoy!
*Sweet Pastry Shell*
1 cup + 2 tablespoons butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, sugar, and salt and mix until smooth. Add one egg, mix until smooth. Add the second egg and the vanilla and mix until completely smooth. Stir in the flour until mixture comes together as dough.
Shape the dough into a disk and wrap in plastic and chill for at least 2 hours.
Roll the dough into a disk 1/8-inch thick. Cut a circle 2 inches larger that your pan and place inside, pressing the dough into the pan gently. Chill the tart shell for at least 30 minutes.
*Almond Frangipane Filling*
2 cups ground almonds or almond flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup butter
In a food processor, combine ground almonds (or almond flour), cornstarch and eggs and mix until smooth. Add the butter and process for 30 seconds.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Peel, core and slice 8 Granny Smith apples
Melt 1/4 cup butter
Measure 1/4 -1/2 cup sugar for topping
Line the tart shell with a layer of Frangipane halfway up the depth of the shell. Arrange thinly sliced apples in concentric circles overlapping slightly as the apples will shrink while baking. Brush the apples with melted butter and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake for 45 minutes or until the Frangipane is golden.
Makes 6 mini tartlets or 1 large 9-inch tart.