Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Oh Canada - Une Tarte Tatin

Mont Royal Park in Montreal
The boat house in North Hatley
It's been much too long since I've posted anything but better late than never, I guess. I just wanted to share a few photos from the first leg of our Canada journey and to accompany the photos I made a yummy autumnal tarte tatin. I hope you enjoy the photos and the recipe (adapted from Smitten Kitchen). 

Casa Bianca - our lovely b&b in Montreal

North Hatlley in the Eastern Townships

I think the key to this tarte tatin is making your own dough - it is so buttery and flaky and caramelize-y and just YUM. The original recipe uses a food processor but as I don't have one of those I turned it out by hand and it came out just dandy. To begin mix 1.5 cups flour and 1 tablespoon sugar together. Cut in 10 tablespoons of chilled butter until the mixture resembles very coarse meal (with some butter pebbles). Then drop in 3 to 6 tablespoons ice water (I generally end up using 5ish) just until your dough comes together (don't overwork it). Roll out the dough so that it will cover whatever pan you are going to cook your apples in (I go with my grandma's cast iron skillet). Then cover with plastic wrap and set it to chill while you make the filling. 

The beautiful fall colors in North Hatley
For the filling:  Cut up a pan-full of apples (peeled, cored and quartered) I used 4 enormous honeycrisp apples and then 1 extra for later, so 5 total. Melt a stick of salted butter (I like the salt factor in this sweet dessert) in your skillet of choice. Remove pan from heat and stir in 1 cup granulated sugar. Spread the sugar mix evenly in the pan and then arrange your apples in the pan so they are snug up against one another (they shrink in their initial cooking so you can later fit in your extra apple, or two). Once positioned, return the pan to high heat and let bubble away for 10 to 15 minutes, until you get a nice dark caramel color. Then flip all your apple slices (so each side gets nice and caramel-y) and add in your extra apples to fill out your tarte. Cook over high heat for another 5. 

Notre Dame du Montreal
To finish: Place the chilled pie crust on top of your apples and tuck in the edges. Pop into a 375 degree oven for about a half an hour or until your crust takes on a nice golden hue, et voila! Let your pie rest for a half hour or so and then turn out onto a plate and admire.

Lake Massawippi