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Divas on a Dime: What’s easier than pie? Classic apple tarte tatin

How often do I say I love autumn? Pretty much every time I talk, write or think. You know how excited I get over things like this. But, really! It’s apple season (happy dance). The smell of apples and pastry cooking together? Heavenly! Better than any scented candle in the world (happier dance).

This week, I’m sharing a recipe I’ve been making for more than 20 years. It’s a classic French tarte you make upside down in a well-seasoned cast iron skillet. The apple is baked in the skillet then it’s topped with the crust which is baked until golden. After its baked, you flip it over for some major wow factor. Guaranteed to produce “ooohs” and “aahhs” from your delighted dessert companions.

I assure you, it’s easier to make than pie. It just looks ridiculously elegant and oh, so fancy.

The reason I haven’t shared this recipe before is because it uses puff pastry. I think puff pastry is expensive and I always try to keep costs as low as possible when I write Divas On A Dime. But everything is relative. If you were going to purchase this tarte at a bakery or restaurant, you’d pay more. If puff pastry is beyond your budget you can use regular pie pastry dough and it will still be delicious.

Classic Apple Tarte Tatin

Yield: 8 normal servings, 4 obnoxious servings

What You’ll Need:

One sheet frozen puff pastry (from a 17 ¼ ounce package)

¼ cup (½ stick) butter, softened

½ cup brown sugar

Pinch salt

Apples (2 to 3 pounds), peeled, sliced lengthwise and cored

Special Equipment

A well-seasoned 10-inch cast-iron skillet

Here’s How:

Preheat oven to 425°F. With a rolling pin on floured work surface, roll thawed pastry sheet into a 10 ½ -inch square and cut out a 10-inch round with a knife. You can use the skillet as a guide. Place the round in the fridge while you prepare the rest of the recipe.

Spread butter thickly on bottom and sides of a skillet and pour sugar evenly over bottom, sprinkle with salt. Arrange the apples slices on sugar, packing them tightly in concentric circles. Cook apples on the stovetop over moderately high heat, undisturbed, until juices are golden and bubbling, about 18 to 20 minutes.

Place skillet in middle of oven. You’ll probably want to place a piece of foil on the rack to catch any drips. Bake 20 minutes, then open oven and lay pastry round over apples.

Bake the tarte until pastry is browned, 20 to 23 minutes. Remove skillet and cool at least 15 minutes.

Right before serving, invert a platter with lip over skillet and, using potholders (be careful, this can be really hot!) to hold skillet and plate tightly together, invert tart onto platter. Don’t worry if any apples stick to the skillet, just place them where they’re supposed to be. Pour any excess caramel from skillet over apples. Serve immediately.

You can use any kind of apple you like but I find Granny Smith, Gala or Honeycrisp work exceptionally well. Enjoy your apple season!

Fabulous Food contributed by Patti Diamond from Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous! Website and blog – www.divasonadime.com Join us on Facebook at DivasOnADimeDotCom.

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