Gill Meller's Apple, Lemon & Thyme Tart
Warm from the oven with lashings of double cream, or for breakfast the next morning with a hot cup of coffee? However you like your Apple Tart, bake it in style with Le Creuset's classic kitchenware.
There’s something magical about apples and lemon. When combined they create the most extraordinary, eloquent floral note. It’s hard to describe but it’s something I always love. I like to add some fresh thyme leaves to this tart because its savoury, green aroma complements apples and works so well in a sweet context. Enjoy warm from the oven with lashings of double cream, or for a real treat cut a slice for breakfast the next morning with a hot cup of coffee. **Preparation time:** 30 minutes **Cooking time:** 40 minutes **Serves:** 8
**INGREDIENTS** * 1 large Bramley apple (about 400g), peeled, cored and diced * 1 lemon, juice and ½ the zest * 2 teaspoons tender thyme leaves * 100g golden caster sugar * 4-6 dessert apples (depending on size), peeled, cored and thinly sliced **For the rough-puff pastry:** * 150g unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small cubes * 300g plain flour, plus extra for dusting * Good pinch of salt * About 100ml iced water **For the frangipane:** * 75g unsalted butter, softened * 75g golden caster sugar * A pinch of salt * 2 eggs, beaten * 75g of ground almonds
**METHOD** 1. First, make the pastry. In a bowl, combine the butter cubes with the flour and salt. Then add just enough iced water to bring everything together into a dough full of big pieces of butter. 2. On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough in one direction away from you to make a rectangle about 1cm thick. Fold the two short ends into the middle so they overlap. Give the pastry a quarter-turn and repeat the rolling and folding process three more times. 3. Wrap the pastry in cling film, then rest it in the fridge for 30 minutes. Remove the pastry from the fridge and repeat the folding process a further three times. Wrap the pastry again and place it in the fridge to chill. 4. Then, put the diced Bramley apple in a pan with the lemon zest, half the thyme leaves and 75g of the sugar. Add 1 tablespoon of water and cook, covered, over a low heat. Stir regularly until the apple pieces have dissolved and you have a thick, slightly translucent purée – this should take about 25-30 minutes. Spoon into a bowl, cool, then place in the fridge to chill. 5. For the frangipane, cream together the butter, caster sugar and salt until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and ground almonds and mix until combined. Set aside. 6. Heat the oven to 190°C/ 170°C Fan/ Gas Mark 5\. Roll out the pastry on a well-floured surface about 4-5mm thick. Using your [Le Creuset Toughened Non-Stick 26cm Square Roaster]( as a guide, line the roaster with the pastry and trim to fit. Use a dull knife to score a 2cm margin around the base of the 4 sides of the pastry but don’t cut all the way through. 7. Spread the frangipane mixture out over the pastry, taking it up to the margins if you can. Spread the chilled apple purée evenly over the top of the frangipane, again, almost to the edges. 8. Arrange the dessert apple slices over the purée in overlapping lines, running back and forth, until you have used them all up. 9. Bake the tart for 30-40 minutes, or until the pastry is risen and crisp and the apples are soft and golden. 10. Sprinkle over the remaining thyme leaves, then allow the tart to cool for 15-20 minutes before serving.
**Cook’s Notes** * The [Le Creuset Toughened Non-Stick 26cm Square Roaster]( is the ideal dish for baking this sweet “appley” pastry. Thanks to its brilliant non-stick qualities, you’ll get a perfectly crisp base and a tart that’s easy as pie to slice and serve. My recipe for rough-puff pastry is very simple and much quicker than making a traditional puff. That said, if you want a good pud and you’re in a hurry, shop-bought puff pastry will work just as well too. * There’s no reason not to swap the apple slices for slices of ripe pear or even plum halves – they’ll both go well with the frangipane and the Bramley apple sauce.
If you recreate this delicious recipe, be sure to share a picture with us on [Instagram]( tagging #FenwickFood. To discover more of Gill Meller's delightful recipes, find his Instagram page [here](
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