This is my take on Ina’s French Apple Tart… for starters it’s a super versatile recipe. Swap the apples for your favorite fruit, swap the walnuts for your favorite nut, or omit them all together. Pre-made or homemade crust, you can’t go wrong.
I just love how the walnuts add a new dimension to this tart. When all is said and done, the walnuts end up with a lovely buttery caramelized cinnamon-sugar coating and they give the tart bonus crunch factor.
If you are short on time, you can omit the crust recipe all together and just go the pre-made grocery store pie crust route.
French Apple Tart
adapted from Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics by Ina Garten
For the Pastry
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, diced, chilled
1/2 cup ice water
Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse for a few seconds to combine. Add the butter and pulse 10 to 12 times, until the butter is in small bits the size of peas. With the motor running, pour the ice water down the feed tube and pulse just until the dough starts to come together.
Dump onto a floured board and knead quickly into a ball. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
For the apples
4 granny smith apples
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, diced, cold
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spray 10″ tart pan with Butter Flavor non-stick cooking spray.
Roll the dough slightly larger than the diameter of your pie tart, trim any overlapping edges with a small knife.
Place the dough on the prepared tart pan and refrigerate while you prepare the apples.
Peel the apples and cut them in half through the stem. Remove the stems and cores with a sharp knife and a melon baler. Slice the apples crosswise in 1/4-inch thick slices. Place overlapping slices of apples diagonally down the middle of the tart and continue making diagonal rows on both sides of the first row until the pastry is covered with apple slices.
Sprinkle the toasted walnuts evenly over the apples. In a small bowl combine the sugar, cinnamon, and ground nutmeg and dust the apples and walnuts evenly. Distribute the diced butter over the tart.
Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the pastry is browned and the edges of the apples start to brown. Rotate the pan once during cooking. If the pastry puffs up in one area, cut a little slit with a knife to let the air out.
Allow the tart to cool and serve warm or at room temperature.