Dessert: French Apple Tart (Tarte de Pommes a la Normande)
cold water, or as needed
sweet apples - peeled, cored, halved and thinly sliced
white sugar for decoration
- In a medium bowl, stir together 1 1/3 cups of flour and salt. Add the butter, 1 egg yolk and water, and stir until the mixture forms large crumbs. If it is too dry to press a handful together, stir in more water. Press the dough into a ball, and wrap in plastic wrap. Flatten slightly, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until firm. This part can be done up to three days in advance.
- To make the frangipane, cream together the butter and 1/2 cup of sugar in a medium bowl until light and soft. Gradually mix in the egg and the remaining egg yolk one at a time. Stir in the apple brandy. Stir 2 tablespoons of flour into the ground almonds, then mix into the batter. Set aside.
- Roll the pastry dough out to about a 12 inch circle on a lightly floured surface. Fold loosely into quarters, and center the point in a 10 inch tart or pie pan. Unfold dough, and press into the bottom and up the sides. Prick with a fork all over, and flute the edges. Return pastry to the refrigerator to chill until firm.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Place a baking sheet inside the oven while it preheats.
- Spoon the frangipane into the chilled pastry, and spread into an even layer. Arrange the apple slices in an overlapping spiral pattern. Each slice should have one edge pressed into the frangipane until it touches the pastry base, and then overlap the previous slice. Start at the outside edge, and work towards the center.
- Place the pie plate on top of the baking sheet in the preheated oven. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the filling begins to brown. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bake for another 10 minutes, then sprinkle sugar over the top of the tart. Return to the oven for 10 more minutes, or until the sugar caramelizes slightly.
- Cool the tart on a wire rack. A short time before serving, warm the apricot jelly. Add some water if necessary to make it a liquid consistency. Brush onto the tart for a nice shine.
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