An Easy French Apple Tart

This is an Easy French Apple Tart recipe that is so buttery and delicious that your friends and family will think that you’ve become Julia Child.

“I think every woman should have a blowtorch.”

Julia Child

Apple tarts can be hard to make because the crust needs to be just the right texture – not too crumbly, not too sticky. If it’s too crumbly, the crust will fall apart when you try to cut it. If it’s too sticky, the crust will be difficult to work with and will stick to your hands.

What is considered a tart?

A tart is a pastry that is open-faced (meaning that there is no crust on the top) and shallow. It is often baked in a special pan with ridged or straight sides.

What is the difference between a tart vs. a tartlet?

A tartlet is a small tart, which fits comfortably in the palm of your hand. Tartlets tend to be 2 to 3 inches in diameter, while the diameter of a traditional tart is much larger at around 9 inches.

Is there a difference between apple pie and apple tart?

While apple tarts and apple pies are incredibly similar, they are not. The key difference is that apple pies tend to have a crust on the top and the bottom. While apple tarts do not have a top crust and have a much thicker crust on the sides and the bottom.

According to Masterclass, a flaky apple pie crust is made with flour, fat, cold water, and salt. While the shell of tarts is typically made with a simpler dough mixture: flour, butter, and water. This dough makes the crust of tarts more crumbly when it is baked.

What kind of apples are best for apple tarts?

According to Eckert’s Orchards (established in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1837), the following apples make excellent tarts (Granny Smith, Braeburn, Jonathan Apples, and Gold Delicious):

  • Granny Smith: If you want a tart apple for your pie, choose Granny Smith apples. They are green and have a tangy taste.
  • Golden Delicious: For a softer, sweeter apple, choose Golden Delicious (we did in the recipe below). However, since Golden Delicious tends to be a sweeter apple, some chefs will reduce the overall amount of sugar that they add to the filling portion of the recipe.
  • Braeburn: For a sweeter apple tart, choose Braeburn apples for your tart.
  • Jonathan Apples: Jonathan apples, tart apples that are grown in the Midwest, have a tart flavor that is perfect for apple tarts and pies.

Note: Jonagold apples (a hybrid between Jonathan apples and Golden Delicious apples) also make excellent tarts.

Which apples are NOT good for baking apple tarts?

Red delicious apples are not good for baking in general since they don’t hold well in high heat. Baking this tart recipe with red delicious apples will result in a mushy tart.

Additionally, Fuji apples are allow not ideally for baking apple tarts due to two reasons: 1) Fuji apples tend to have a mild favor, and 2) Fuji apples tend to have a higher water content, which may lead to a watery tart.

To maximize your success with this recipe,

Types of Apples Good of Baking Apple Pies and Tarts

How to Make a French Apple Tart

Ingredients

Pastry

  • Pastry flour
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Butter
  • Egg Yolk
  • Cold water

Filling

  • Gold Delicious Apples
  • Lemon, juiced
  • Apricot Preserves
  • Sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat over to 400°F
  2. Place the flour and salt into the food processor. Then pulse the flour with the salt for about 5 seconds to quickly sift the ingredients together.
  3. Add the butter (make sure that the butter is cut into small cubes) to the mixture. Pulse the mixture until the butter has broken up into small pieces (small enough where some of the butter is still visible, but the butter should not be grainy). Make sure NOT to over-pulse the mixture.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the egg and water. Beat the egg and then add the egg mixture to the flour mixture. Pulse the flour mixture about 6 times (until a ball forms). The pasty at this point should be not dry or sticky (add a few drops of water if necessary to make a smooth ball).
  5. Place the pastry ball on a lightly-floured cooking surface and knead the ball for about 15-20 secs so that the ball is well mixed. Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.
  6. Roll the dough so that it is ⅛” inch thick. Fit the rolled dough into the tart pie. Then fold down the excess dough into the sides so that the dough on the sides is about ¼” thick (or double thickness).
  7. Use the pastry brush to brunch a layer of apricot preserves (about 1/4 of a cup) onto the bottom of the tart dough.
  8. Starting from the middle, arrange the apples in a circular pattern. Continue to layer the apple until the tart is filled.
  9. Sprinkle the top of the tart with sugar. Then glaze the top of the tart with about 1/2 of the apricot preserves.
  10. Place tart in the oven (400°F) and bake for 20-25 minutes until the apple slices are tender and slightly brown.
  11. Glaze apple tart with the remaining apricot preserve. Cool until the tart is only slightly warm, then serve!
Full French Apple Tart
Full French Apple Tart
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An Easy French Apple Tart Recipe

A delicious French Apple Tart that is super easy to make. This is a simplified version of Simone "Simca" Beck's "Tarte aux pommes, tiede" recipe. I have always found the classic recipe a bit hard to understand, so here is a simplified version below.
Prep Time33 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Cool Time25 mins
Total Time1 hr 23 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: French Apple Tart
Servings: 8
Calories: 359kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Food processor
  • 1 9" Tart Pan
  • 1 Pastry Brush

Ingredients

Pastry

  • 2 cups Pastry flour
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 12 tbsp Butter (Cut into Small Cubes) (12 tbsp is 1.5 sticks of Butter)
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 3 tbsp Cold water

Filling

  • 1 Golden Delicious Apples
  • 1 Lemon, juiced
  • 1 cup Apricot Preserves, Strained
  • 2 tbsp Sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat over to 400°F
  • Place the flour and salt into the food processor. Then pulse the flour with the salt for about 5 seconds to quickly sift the ingredients together.
  • Add the butter (make sure that the butter is cut into small cubes) to the mixture. Pulse the mixture until the butter has broken up into small pieces (small enough where some of the butter is still visible, but the butter should not be grainy). Make sure NOT to over-pulse the mixture.
  • In a small bowl, combine the egg and water. Beat the egg and then add the egg mixture to the flour mixture. Pulse the flour mixture about 6 times (until a ball forms). The pasty at this point should be not dry or sticky (add a few drops of water if necessary to make a smooth ball).
  • Place the pastry ball on a lightly-floured cooking surface and knead the ball for about 15-20 secs so that the ball is well mixed. Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.
  • Roll the dough so that it is ⅛" inch thick. Fit the rolled dough into the tart pie. Then fold down the excess dough into the sides so that the dough on the sides is about ¼" thick (or double thickness).
  • Use the pastry brush to brunch a layer of apricot preserves (about 1/4 of a cup) onto the bottom of the tart dough.
  • Starting from the middle, arrange the apples in a circular pattern. Continue to layer the apple until the tart is filled.
  • Sprinkle the top of the tart with sugar. Then glaze the top of the tart with about 1/2 of the apricot preserves.
  • Place tart in the oven (400°F) and bake for 20-25 minutes until the apple slices are tender and slightly brown.
  • Glaze apple tart with the remaining apricot preserve. Cool until the tart is only slightly warm, then serve!

Nutrition

Calories: 359kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 149mg | Potassium: 182mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 636IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 1mg

There you have it, this delicious tart that is broken down into simple steps. Remember to let the tart cool to room temperature before serving.

French Apple Tart With a Circular Apple Pattern

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