Tarte des Demoiselles Tatin (Upside-Down Apple Tart)

Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child

About a month ago or so I was the lucky winner of Domesticated Academic’s giveaway: Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  I was pretty darn excited.  I rarely win stuff, so when I do I tend to make a big deal of it….yes, you are right yet another lovely trait of my personality!  I wish I was kidding about this but sadly when I win something I get so excited I have to tell everyone!  Which usually means that I will even share the fact that I won with total strangers, much to my family’s total dismay.

One would think that I cook/bake a lot of French “food” but that would be a big fat no.  I think at my core I should have been Italian or Spanish.  I, however, am always willing to learn.  I have been “reading” my new book (that I WON! 🙂 ) and I finally decided to make something.  Since it is apple season I thought this delicious tart would be perfect to share with you guys.

This is a fairly easy tart to make and while apples are juicy and perfect it is definitely the time to take advantage of it.  The caramel sauce that forms on the “bottom” then top of the pie is simply amazing.  Vanilla ice cream or sweet whipped cream are perfect toppings for the tart.

Tarte des Demoiselles Tatin


4 lbs cooking apples (Golden Delicious) (that’s a lot of apples so I enlisted Sunshine to help…she was thrilled!)

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

2 tablespoon butter

1/2 cup granulated sugar (yes you read it right, sugar twice)

6 tablespoons butter, melted (yes more butter)

For the pastry dough: (directions for dough below tart’s how to)

2/3 cup flour

1 tablespoon sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

5 1/2 tablespoon fat: 4 tablespoon chilled butter and 1 1/2 tablespoon chilled vegetable shortening

How to:

Quarter, core, and peel the apples; cut the quarters in half lengthwise into 1/8 inch thick slices. Toss in a bowl with the 1/3 cup of sugar and cinnamon. You should have about 10 cups of apples.

Butter the baking dish heavily, especially on the bottom.  Sprinkle half of the remaining sugar on the bottom of the dish and arrange 1/3rd of your apples over it.  Sprinkle with 1/3rd of your melted butter.  Repeat with a layer of half the remaining apples and butter, then a final layer of apples and butter.  Sprinkle the rest of the sugar over the apples.

a healthy amount of apples if you ask me 🙂

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Roll out your pie crust to a thickness of 1/8 inch, and cut it the size of the top of the baking dish.  Place it over the apples, allowing its edges to fall against the inside edge of the dish.  Cut 4 or 5 holes about 1/8 inch long in the top of the pastry to allow cooking steam to escape.

ready for the oven

Bake in the lower third of the preheated oven for 45 to 60 minutes.  If the pastry begins to brown too much, cover it lightly with aluminum foil.  Tart is done when you tilt the dish and see that a thick, brown syrup rather than a light liquid exudes from the apples between the crust and the edge of the dish.

Immediately unmold tart onto a serving dish.  If the apples are not a light caramel brown, you can run it under a hot broiler for several minutes to caramelize the surface lightly.

note: this un-molding business is easier said than done (for me anyway) but ultimately it worked, it was a messy situation but this tart doesn’t need to look pretty, it just need to taste amazing 🙂

another note: I didn’t put under broiler because my serving plate didn’t go in the oven so I used my little kitchen torch and it did the trick!

I like my little kitchen torch, so handy

Pastry Dough how to:

In your food processor (equipped with a steel blade) combine your flour, sugar and salt.  Cut your chilled butter and shortening into small pieces and add to your dry ingredients.  Use the pulse (or turn on and off) 4 or 5 times.  Turn on your processor and add your chilled water at once.  Immediately flick the machine on and off, the dough should begin to mass on the blade.  Do not over mix.  place the dough on a lightly floured surface.  with the heel of one hand (not the palm which is too warm) rapidly press the pastry dough until you have a smooth consistency.  Form a round ball, sprinkle it lightly with flour and wrap in wax paper.  Either freeze for 1 hour or refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.

dough…yep just dough!

more dough…with a little dusting of flour this time

I do not have a picture of a serving because we ate late it was dark and I gave up on taking pictures 🙂

Printer Friendly: Tarte des Demoiselles Tatin

Peace and Demoiselles are lovely ladies,


Here is Tiffany’s web page go check it out, she is a lovely demoiselle 🙂 Domesticated Academic

I shared my recipes on here as well:


8 thoughts on “Tarte des Demoiselles Tatin (Upside-Down Apple Tart)

  1. Congrats on the cookbook! I love to just sit and read them. This looks amazing! I’m not very good making pastry dough. I’ll give this a go, though. ❤ and hugs sweetness!

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