Normandy is a beautiful region of Northwestern France in close proximity to the English Channel. Its temperate climate make it an ideal location for growing apples. My friend Helene introduced me to the Tarte Normande, a delicious apple dessert baked in a custard, that is extremely simple to make. She took it to a gathering we both attended and I fell in love with it. It’s a nice alternative to the every day apple pie.
Apart from its fabulous taste, I love its simplicity. For one, you don’t have to cut the apples too thin, a huge plus in my book. It’s assembly is not fussy in the least bit, and the ingredients are readily available to even the most inexperienced baker.
You should choose apples such as Crispin or Golden Delicious. Don’t use Granny Smith’s, because they are too sour for this purpose. I like to bake my Tarte Normande in a tart pan with a removable bottom instead of a traditional pie pan. Why? Well, it looks more authentic in my opinion. By the way I gave away two of these beauties as Christmas gifts to co-workers. I’m still hearing about it.
Apart from its importance in World War II history, Normandy is known for butter and cheese (Camembert anyone?) To have a dish served a la Normande, means that it will be served with a sauce having butter or cheese, or both! Yum. There is also another wonderfully delicious liquid product from Normandy-Calvados-an apple liqueur. At at least 55% alcohol, it certainly has the power to drive the blues away that the rainy Normandy weather can bring. Speaking of Calvados, there is a delicious pork loin recipe made with Calvados-Pork a la Normande– But, that is the subject of another post!
The next time you are in charge of dessert for that office party, or family gathering, bring along a Tarte Normande, they’ll love you for it! Checkout some cool tart pans on Amazon if you need one.
Tarte Normande recipe: Easy and delicious. Yummy apples baked in a flaky crust and topped with custard. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar the last few minutes.
- 3 apples (Crispin or Golden Delicious)
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon sugar
- 2 Tbsp butter cold, cut into pieces
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 7 Tbsp butter cold, cut into pieces
- 2 1/2 Tbsp iced water
- For the dough: In a food processor place the flour, salt and unsalted butter. Pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add the iced water. Mix until the mixture forms a ball. Remove from food processor, dust with a little flour and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350'F.
- Roll our the dough on a floured surface. The dough should measure about 10".
- Place dough in a 9" tart pan with a removable bottom.
- Peel apples and cut into thick slices (about 1/2"). Arrange in concentric circles around the dough.
- To make the custard:
- Beat two eggs, add vanilla, sour cream, and heavy cream. Whisk thoroughly and pour over the apples.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and top with pieces of butter. Bake an additional 5 minutes.
- *You can also top it with toasted slivered almonds at this time.
- To make sure it is done, insert a cake tester into the custard.