Well this is a proper treat and even better supremely easy to make with only 5 ingredients! That combination of tangy apples bathed in caramel sauce with a crispy, flaky pastry base, just fabulous. Whilst there are many recipes out there for Tarte Tatin, this one is so simple and delicious that I rarely deviate. It works like a dream and there is never any left over. By the way if you are a fan of salted caramel puddings just up the pinch of salt in the ingredients to about 1/2 a teaspoon and voila you will have Salted Caramel Tarte Tatin.
A frying pan with an oven proof or removable handle is ideal but if you don’t have one just cook the apples in a regular frying pan and then transfer to a baking tin before topping with pastry and putting in the oven. I use a 20cm le creuset that I have had for ever and these amounts work a treat and we easily finish it between the four of us. I have also used a 30cm saute pan (also le creuset) which make a great big tarte but I did need a little help turning the pan over on to the waiting plate.
I tend to use a pack of ready rolled puff pastry for this. With a bit of careful cutting out (and patching for the second) I can get two circles of pastry out of one roll so either make another tarte tatin, freeze it or make the Onion Tarte Tatin with Blue Cheese (February 2014)…. just saying.
4 large eating apples, Braeburn are ideal, peeled, cored and quartered
50g caster sugar
1 pack ready rolled puff pastry (usually around 375g)
Pinch of salt (see introduction)
Preheat the oven to 200. Unroll the pastry and measure out a circle using the top of the pan. Melt the butter with the sugar and add the apples along with a pinch of salt. Cook for around 20-30 minutes until the apples are tender but not collapsing. As it bubbles a caramel will form. Turn the apples a couple of times for even cooking. Remove from the heat, ensure all the pieces are round side down then extremely carefully place the circle of pastry over the apples and tuck the edges between the side of the pan and the apples. Put in the oven for 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden and puffed up. Take the pan out remembering of course that the handle will be hot and let it sit for a couple of minutes to settle. Using a plate with a lip so you don’t lose all the sauce, invert this over the pan and quickly turn both so that the tarte ends up on the plate pastry side down, apple side up. Adjust any apples that have slipped out of place and serve with cream. I divide this into quarters for the four of us but reckon I could eat half without much trouble….
I love a good chocolate fondant and wasn’t convinced there was any need to gild the lily but this salted caramel idea just wouldn’t go away and I knew I had to have a go at making it. Just out of interest you understand……. So this is the pudding I teased you with around Valentine’s and I thought it would be perfect for Mothering Sunday should you still be without a pudding or as an early Easter treat.
These puddings are sublime, honestly beyond fabulous. A crisp chocolate outer gives way to a soft chocolate pudding containing molten caramel sauce within. They are so good. Surprisingly they also very easy to make and sit happily in the fridge until you want to cook them. As long as the oven is at 200 and you cook them for exactly 12 minutes they will be perfect. I am no expert baker but if I can do them then anyone can.
Salted Caramel Chocolate Fondants
I am all for quick and easy and although these puds fit that bill you will need to make the caramel ahead of time so it can set firm. This only takes a few hours but I made it a day ahead so I could forget about it. You can also make the puddings the day ahead and keep in the fridge. If you remember put the caramel in the freezer when you start making the puddings just to give them an extra chill – this keeps the sauce together rather than it melting straight into the puddings. Miss the salt out if you think you or your children would prefer Caramel Chocolate Fondants.
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons double cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
85g butter, plus a little extra for greasing
85g chocolate, I used 50/50 dark and milk
85g golden caster sugar
1 teaspoon cocoa
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon coffee
45g plain flour
Pinch of salt
Heat the butter, sugar and cream in a pan and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and a good pinch of salt. When it is cold enough to taste try it, you may want more salt then put this caramel in a small bowl in the fridge to set. Grease 4 metal pudding tins with the melted butter then dust each one with cocoa. Put in the fridge until you need them. Melt the butter and chocolate in a bowl over a pan of barely simmering water. Whisk the eggs and sugar together until pale, frothy and at least doubled in volume. Mix the chocolate mixture into the eggs, add the coffee and then gently fold in the flour along with a pinch of salt. Half fill each greased tin with the chocolate mixture then add a teaspoonful of the cold caramel, it may sink a bit but don’t worry. Pour the remaining mix over the caramel to fill the tins. Put the puddings into the fridge for at least half an hour whilst you preheat the oven to 200. Cook the puddings for exactly 12 minutes, then remove from the oven, turn out onto plates and serve with cream or ice cream. This makes four but it is up to you how many it serves…..