Oh blog, how I missed you!
I really loved every part of my cake decorating course except for the traveling (that was the worst part- 2 hours bus ride one way was just way too much for me). But now I cant wait to get back home, which I’ll be in another three days *doing a happy dance*. And to be very honest I missed blogging, (the whole setting up and photographing for the blog included) and the blogging world in general with all its talented people. I missed it all! I missed you all!
Besides the traveling (which, as mentioned before, I hated), the course was all that I hoped it to be. I am still not perfect but I learnt a lot in the past two months and met a bunch of gifted people and am so glad I finally decided to do this course. I had mentioned in my previous post that I was intimidated by my classmates but as someone pointed out in one of the comments on that post that its a blessing since I get to learn not only from the teachers but from my course mates as well, that’s exactly how it turned out to be. I am so blown away with the talent that my friends from class have and its great that I got to be in the company of such brilliantly talented people.
I will be sharing pictures of what I did in my course and then some of my stay in Canada soon, but today I wanted to share the recipe of this eggless apple tart that I made yesterday. Just because its that good. And good things should be shared ASAP.
During my course I met this talented sister-in-laws duo from Delhi (of Duet Sweet) who were taking the four month pastry arts course from Bonnie Gordon college (I did the two month Designer Cakes’ Certificate program). They were sweet enough to give me one of their copies of The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Pastry Arts (from where I have adapted this recipe from) since it would have been difficult for them to carry two of the same books back. It is a 10 kg book and even though I got excited and took it, I am going to have a tough time carrying it back to the States. Also, I am dreading packing. Anybody out there ready to lend a helping hand???
Anyway, back to the recipe. I was a little wary making this, since it was the first time I was using the oven at my uncle’s place plus I did not have access to my weighing scale, my tools, equipments and had to eye ball some of the stuff and the oven was not co-operating either. But it came out so good. The apricot jam glaze on top adds to the goodness that this tart is. I did tweak the original recipe and added cinnamon and one of my cousins who doesn’t even like cinnamon, loved this tart and was cursing me that there wasn’t enough since I had halved the recipe. She kept saying that there should have been more so that she could take it to work today. It got a thumbs up from my picky grandmother as well.
And what with fall almost here, this dessert is just perfect for the coming days! Hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
- 250 grams cake or all purpose flour
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp sugar
- 125 grams cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- ¼ cup very cold water plus 1 tsp vinegar mixed in
- 370 grams Golden Delicious Apples
- ½ lemon
- 75 grams sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 3 golden delicious apples
- ½ lemon
- a pinch ground cinnamon
- 100 grams apricot jam
- Sift the flour, salt and sugar together.
- Add the butter to the sifted flour mixture and cut it into the flour with a pastry scraper, working until the pieces of butter are the size of dried lentils.
- Pour the water-vinegar into the butter-flour crumb mixture. Working quickly and smoothly incorporate the liquid until the dough holds together, adding additional water, if necessary. Do not over work the dough.
- Gather the dough together, form into a disk and wrap it in plastic and refrigerate at least for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours before rolling it out into the required shape.
- When ready to bake roll the dough out to a 10 inch circle (1/4th inch thick). Transfer the rolled out circle to the tart pan. Using your fingertips, gently press the dough into the pan to make a neat fit. Pinch any excess dough off. Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to chill. While the dough is chilling prepare the filling.
- Peel the apples and apply the cut lemon wedge to avoid the apple from browning. Cut the apples into ¼ inch sized cubes. Try to keep them uniform for even cooking.
- Combine the sugar and 3 tbsp plus 1 tsp water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the apples. Cover, and cook over low heat for 20 minutes, occasionally stirring with a wooden spoon, or until the apples are translucent and all the moisture has evaporated. Mix in the cinnamon and vanilla. Take care that the apples don't disintegrate, the mixture should be chunky. If apples cooked before moisture has evaporated, uncover and cook on high heat till moisture evaporates.
- Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl to stop cooking. Cover with plastic film and let cool till you prepare the garnish.
- Peel the apples, cut in half, and rub the lemon to prevent discoloration. Cut each apple half, lengthwise into very thin slices, no more than ⅛th inch thick. Place the slices in a bowl and squeeze lemon juice over them, tossing to coat.
- Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C).
- Remove the tart shell from the refrigerator. Spoon the apple filling into the shell, spreading it out to make an even layer that fills shell three quarters full.
- Starting with the outside edge, begin arranging the apple slices, slightly overlapping, in concentric circles over the top of the filling. Fill in any holes with apple scraps and finish center with a tight circle of apple slices. Sprinkle sparingly ground cinnamon on top.
- Bake 1 hour or till the crust is golden and apple slices are caramelized and cooked through.
- Remove from oven and let cool slightly on wire wrack.
- Combine the jam and 3 tbsp plus 1 tsp water in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook for a minutes to heat through. Press through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl. Unmold tart and using a pastry brush lightly coat the entire top with the warm apricot glaze.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.