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Festive Apple Tart Recipe

Christopher Kimball updates Julia Child's showstopping holiday dessert

French Apple Tart

Serves 8


  • 1⅓1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


  • 10 Golden Delicious apples (8 ounces each), peeled, cored
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

1. For the crust: Heat oven to 350°F. Whisk flour, sugar and salt together. Add melted butter and stir until dough forms. Using your hands, press dough evenly into bottom and sides of 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom. Place pan on wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet; bake on lowest rack, until crust is deep golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Set aside.

2. For the filling: Cut 5 apples lengthwise into quarters, and cut each quarter lengthwise into 4 slices. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in skillet over medium heat. Add apple slices and water, and toss to combine. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until apples begin to turn translucent and are slightly pliable, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer apples to large plate; set aside.

3. Microwave apricot preserves until fluid, about 30 seconds. Strain through fine-mesh strainer, reserving solids. Set aside 3 tablespoons strained preserves.

4. Cut 5 apples into 1/2-inch-thick wedges. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in skillet over medium heat. Add remaining apricot preserves, reserved apricot solids, raw apples and salt. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until apples are very soft, about 10 minutes.

5. Puree apple mixture with potato masher. Cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 2 cups, about 5 minutes.

6. Transfer puree to baked tart shell. Set aside 5 thinnest slices of sautéed apple. Starting at outer edge of tart, arrange remaining slices, overlapping, in circles. Fit reserved slices in center. Bake tart on lower rack for 30 minutes. Remove from oven. Heat broiler.

7. While broiler heats, microwave reserved preserves until fluid, about 20 seconds. Brush over apples, avoiding crust. Broil tart, checking every 30 seconds and turning, until apples are caramelized, 1 to 3 minutes. Let cool for at least 11/2 hours. Remove outer metal ring of tart pan, slide spatula between tart and pan bottom, and slide tart onto serving platter.

Nutrients per serving: 205 calories, 1g protein, 52g carbohydrates, 4g fiber, 6g fat, 17mg cholesterol, 105mg sodium

Christopher Kimball is the founder and editor of Cook's Illustrated, and host of America's Test Kitchen.

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