It is officially fall and I consider that apple season. This rustic Apple Pecan Tart is one of my favorite apple desserts because it is so easy to make. What I truly love about this tart is how the flavor of the apples comes through. The apples are simply baked with sugar, butter and vanilla then brushed with apricot jam for some color and flavor.
Even though I love my apple pie with cinnamon and spices, sometimes all the spices overwhelm the apples themselves. In this tart I mixed tart Granny Smith apples with sweet Jazz apples. Both stay nice and firm when baked and deliver just the right flavor and texture to make this tart my favorite. Golden Delicious, Rome Beauty or Jonagold apples are also great apples to use for baking.
I am always curious, what apples you cook with and what is available in your area. I remember growing up in Indiana and Winesap and McIntosh were common apple types. Occasionally, I can find McIntosh here in NorCal, but have yet to find the Winesaps. We have area in Placerville, CA called Apple Hill, and there I can find so many different types of apples. We are heading up there in a couple of weeks and expect to see all kinds of apples and take some beautiful pictures of that area. If you want to see beforehand check this out: http://www.applehill.com/.
- Ingredients for the dough
- 2¼ cup AP flour
- ½ tsp. salt
- ½ cup cold vegetable shortening
- ¼ cup cold butter
- 6-7 tbls. ice water - may need more
- Ingredients for the tart
- 2-3 large apples - use a good baking apple that will stay firm
- 2 tbls. sugar
- 2 tbls. butter, cut into small cubes
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- ¼ cup chopped pecans
- ¼ cup apricot jam
- For the dough:
- Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl
- Add the shortening and butter to the flour, cut in small pieces.
- Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut in the shortening/butter until the size of small peas.
- Add the water one tablespoon at a time mixing with a fork just until the dough starts to stick together. Use extra water if necessary.
- Gather up the dough into a disk and wrap in plastic.
- Chill until ready to use.
- Prepare the Tart:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
- One a floured board, roll out the tart dough to an ⅛" thick rectangle.
- Cut down the sides to make an 18" x 6" rectangle.
- Move the dough onto a flat sheet pan, brush water on the edge and turn in the sides to make a ½" rim.
- With a fork, lightly press into the dough to seal the rim.
- Peel, core and quarter the apples, then cut into ⅛" thick slices.
- Arrange two rows of apple slices on top of the dough. They should fit nicely side-by-side.
- Sprinkle the apples with the sugar, dot with butter and drizzle with the vanilla.
- Bake in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, sprinkle the chopped pecans on top and bake an additional 15 minutes.
- When done, let the tart cool slightly then brush with the warmed apricot jam.
- Slide the tart on to a serving platter and cut into slices.
Make two rows of apples layering on top of one another. Sprinkle with sugar and vanilla then dot with the butter.
The apples look so pretty layered together.
Now add a small amount of your favorite jam and spread to the edges of the dough
Roll the dough up tightly and put on a baking parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes or until nicely browned.
I work a lot of hours and it is hard to find time to get my baking done. Today, I had the whole morning to make my tarts and it was such a beautiful day. I opened the windows, put some music on and got the flour and butter out. A perfect day for me.
To add to my already perfect day I realized I had company watching me bake. Here are my little friends right outside my kitchen window. They usually come up my hill around 10 o’clock in the morning for a drink of water out of my bird fountain and usually a nibble on some of my flowers.