Yesterday, I put on my apron and took another stab at using my lights (for those of you curious, I have two Einstein lights , two reflectors , a medium soft box , an umbrella , a cyber commander , and two cybersync transceivers ). I now have (2) tarts in the kitchen, and a few photos to share. I'm still getting the hang of things around here. After spending many years using various techniques to manipulate and get the best results out of natural light, I now have so much control, right at my fingers tips, that I just don't know what to do. As you can probably tell, I'm a bit overwhelmed at the moment, but bare with me, and things should start to run more smoothly in the next few weeks. I really am looking forward to seeing how my photography progresses, and pretty pumped to be able to share it with you.
My body has been craving something apple-y and fall-ish for weeks. Brent isn't a big fan of pie, so if I want things to get eaten around here, 2 tarts to be exact, it better be something that he loves. Tarts he can handle, and this French tart dough recipe from Paule Caillat via David Lebovitz is pretty extraordinary. It is soft and delicate, easy to handle, rich and buttery. Once I found this recipe, I haven't used another. A while back I added some Parmesan cheese for a savory tart, and it was crazy good. This time, I left it as is, perfect.
Despite the fact that this recipe has three steps, caramel sauce, tart crust, and frying apples in butter, it is quite a bit easier than it sounds. The caramel is a mixture of brown sugar, butter, cream and salt, with a touch of vanilla in the end. A quick boil on the stove until it thickens, and then you can let it cool on the counter and then in the fridge for a few hours. The crust is an interesting recipe that involves placing butter, oil, water, salt and sugar in a bowl, and then in the oven for 15 minutes. Then you complete it by stirring in the flour and waiting for it to cool to press it into a tart pan. The crust is baked for 15 minutes, and then left to cool before filling. The apples, fried in some butter with brown sugar, corn starch, cinnamon and salt, fill the air with that yummy fall-baking smell. Layer the caramel and the apples in the tart shell and then top with salt flakes, and bake for 20 minutes. Serve with a generous serving of vanilla ice cream, and this dessert is basically the most amazingly intense combination of flavors.
SALTED CARAMEL APPLE TARTmakes 1 rectangular tart (13.75 x 4.5")
caramel sauce adapted slightly from Ree Drummond
tart crust from Paule Caillat via David Lebovitz