Raymond Blanc’s current tv show Kitchen Secrets has contained so many delicious recipes but this one stood out for me and Mr CC. Mr CC is not the most demanding of people so when he watched this tart being made and turned to me saying “make it happen” in that wry, tongue in cheek way of his, I knew he must really want to try it!
For the pastry:
250g plain flour
125g unsalted butter, diced
1 teaspoon milk or water (I used milk)
For the apple filling:
15g unsalted butter
½ tablespoon lemon juice
15g caster sugar
½ tablespoon Calvados, or any apple brandy or liqueur
4-5 Cox’s apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices – aim for 8-12 slices per apple
For the custard (this is the amount I used which was double Raymond Blanc’s amount):
200ml double cream
100g caster sugar
- Start by making the pastry: pulse the flour and butter in a food processor until you have crumbs.
- Add the egg and milk and pulse again until the pastry clumps but does not form a ball – be careful not to overwork it.
- Tip the dough onto a sheet of clingfilm and kneed it just enough to form a ball. Flatten, wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 220˚c/fan oven 200˚c/440˚F /gas mark 7.
- Roll out the chilled dough between two sheets of clingfilm. I didn’t need to add any extra flour. Use one sheet of the clingfilm to lift the pastry to line a 20cm loose bottomed flan tin. Press the pastry into the tin and use the rolling pin to roll over the top and cut of any excess pastry.
- Refrigerate until ready to complete. You can make the tart up to this point the day before. Just make sure you wrap the tin in clingfilm so the pastry doesn’t dry out.
- Now make the filling: start by placing the butter, lemon juice and sugar in a saucepan and heating until the butter has melted and the sugar dissolved.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the calvados. Leave to one side.
- Prepare the apples and then line them in the pastry case in concentric circles, overlapping each piece so the tart is packed with apple. Have a spare apple on standby should you need it – apples vary in size and it’s always worth having extra if needed!
- Bruch the cooled syrup over the top of the apples and place the tart in the oven for 10 minutes.
- After this time, and leaving the tart in the oven reduce the temperature to 200˚c/fan oven 180˚c/400˚F /gas mark 6 and cook for a further 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden and the apples have browned a little on the edges.
- Whisk together the double cream, eggs and sugar until thick and well combined.
- Pour over the apple tart and bake for a further 20 minutes or until the custard has set.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool for an hour. The custard will puff up in the oven and settle as it cools.
- Serve with clotted cream or ice cream.
- Bask in the glory of the wonderful thing you have made.