March 15th, 2010

caramel apple tart with cinnamon ice cream

apple tart

i know this looks like a fall or winter dessert, but after the cold, rainy weekend we just had here, we’re not making any excuses for cooking up tons of apples in brown sugar and cinnamon. besides, sunday was pi day, and the culinary calendar demanded that we make a pie of some kind. the ice cream was just a bonus. now with that out of the way, i’m going to make a bold statement: this apple tart may be the greatest thing i’ve ever baked.

apple tart

it’s a dessert you’ll dream about, waiting impatiently to bake a new one before devouring it in mere hours. a bite of the tart combined with a spoonful of the ice cream…there were literally no words exchanged while we ate.

apple tart

there’s not much the girl and i don’t have in the kitchen since we moved in together, but when i received a few gift certificates, i got myself a shiny new tart pan. bon appétit magazine has probably 2 tart recipes per issue, so i didn’t have to look far for inspiration. although the recipe may look a bit daunting, it’s actually pretty simple when you get down to it, which is what makes it so delicious in the first place.

apple tart

take 2 lbs granny smith apples, cored, peeled and diced…

apple tart

…and cook down with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. you could stop right here and just eat, but i promise it gets even better.

apple tart

there is a quick caramel sauce that we almost considered omitting in fear that the tart would be sweet enough without it, but we were so glad we kept it in – not only does it give a great base to which the apples can adhere, it also bubbles over during baking, adding extra (duh) gooey caramelization to the crust.

apple tart

so once you have your apples piled in the tart, just top with a simple crumb mixture (not pictured here) made of butter, brown sugar and flour (and nuts if you like). you end up with a beautiful golden crispy crust.

apple tart

and let’s not forget about the ice cream. it only takes a few hours to make, but it’s best if you do it ahead of time and serve it with the tart hot from the oven. if you have guests over, the smell will drive them crazy until it’s time to eat. but just wait until they actually take a bite. i’m not saying this tart will make you some new best friends for life, but it can’t hurt.

apple tart

caramel apple tart
makes 1 9-inch tart and 1 1/2 quarts ice cream. from bon appétit magazine. UPDATE: i originally wrote that the crust called for 1 cup butter.  it should be 1/2 cup butter. it has been corrected below.

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
1/4 c sugar
1 egg yolk
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/4 c all-purpose flour

caramel sauce
2/3 c sugar
1/4 c water
1/4 c heavy whipping cream
3 Tbsp butter
1/4 tsp sea salt

1/2 cup packed golden brown sugar
1/2 tsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp (1/4 stick) butter
2 lbs granny smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into 3/4 inch pieces
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp whiskey (optional)
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon

crumb topping
6 Tbsp flour
6 Tbsp packed dark brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 c pecans, toasted (optional)
3 Tbsp chilled butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

cinnamon ice cream
6 egg yolks
1 1/2 c heavy whipping cream, divided
1 1/2 c whole milk
3/4 c sugar
pinch of salt
2 Tbsp dark rum (optional)
1tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp ground cinnamon

1. make the crust: beat the butter in a medium bowl until smooth. add sugar, egg yolk and salt; beat until blended. add flour and beat just until dough begins to clump together. gather dough into ball and flatten into a disk. press into bottom and up sides of 9 inch tart pan. pierce crust all over with fork. freeze crust for 30 minutes. preheat the oven to 375F. bake crust until golden brown and baked through, about 30 minutes. cool crusts in pan on wire rack. can be made 1 day ahead – store airtight in pans at room temperature.

2. make the caramel sauce: combine sugar and 1/4 cup water in a heavy medium saucepan. stir over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves. increase heat and boil without stirring until syrup is deep amber, occasionally brushing down pan sides with a wet pastry brush to prevent crystallization, and swirling pan, about 6 minutes. remove pan from heat. add cream, then butter and salt. the mixture will bubble. stir vigorously until smooth. can be made 1 day ahead – cover and chill. to rewarm, place on medium-low heat until just pourable.

3. make the filling: whisk brown sugar and cornstarch in a bowl to blend. melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. add apple pieces and saute until almost tender, about 10 minutes. add brown sugar mixture; stir until sugar dissolves, then add vanilla, whiskey (optional) and cinnamon. simmer until juices are bubbling and slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. remove from heat and cool completely.

4. make the crumb topping: blend flour, brown sugar and salt in a food processor. add pecans (optional) and blend until coarsely chopped. add butter and process just until small moist clumps form. can be made 1 day ahead – cover and chill.

5. assemble the tart: preheat the oven to 375F. place the tart crust on a baking sheet (in case filling bubbles over during baking). pour caramel sauce on crust and spread to cover. spoon the apple filling down over the caramel sauce and top with the crumb topping. bake until apple filling is bubbling and topping is crisp and golden, 25 to 30 minutes. cool 5 minutes, then carefully loosen crust from sides of pan with a small sharp knife and remove the pan sides. cool 10 minutes more before cutting and serving.

6. make the ice cream: whisk egg yolks to blend in medium metal bowl. pour 1 cup cream into another medium bowl; set fine strainer over bowl with cream. whisk milk, sugar, pinch of salt, and 1/2 cup cream in heavy medium saucepan; bring to simmer, stirring until sugar dissolves. gradually whisk hot milk mixture into egg yolks. return mixture to same saucepan and stir constantly over medium-low heat until custard thickens slightly and instant-read thermometer reads 160F-170F, about 5 minutes.

7. pour custard through strainer set on bowl over cream. whisk mixture to blend; mix in whiskey (optional), vanilla and cinnamon. chill custard until cold, about 2 hours.  process custard in ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. transfer ice cream to container; cover and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours or overnight.

71 Comments for caramel apple tart with cinnamon ice cream - why not leave some love?

  1. Memoria says:

    This dessert looks fabulous. I never let the weather dictate what I make; I’m glad you didn’t. 🙂

    I’m bookmarking this recipe.

  2. Kristen says:

    The cinnamon in the ice cream sounds like a great partner with that caramel cinnamon of that tart. I am intrigued by the caramel layer in the tart. I imagine it was divine!

  3. The dish and pictures look awesome man. What’s your advice for taking awesome shots? Getting in real close? Also, I thought you would have thrown in some fresh lemon juice and zest or even orange zest. I always do, when I’m making an apple filling. Good job!


  4. rose says:

    THANK YOU for gorgeous ‘edible’ photos and an ‘over-the-top’ variation of an old standard!!! YUMMMM I can smell the caramel sauce! Cinnamon IC: great addition!

  5. petebakes says:

    hey everyone, i made a mistake when i transcribed the recipe. the crust should need 1/2 cup butter, not 1 cup. i’ve updated it above. thanks!

  6. grace says:

    fall shmall–i’d eat this any time, any place (with or without the extra butter in the crust…). really awesome tart and truly tasty ice cream!

  7. Mimi says:

    Oh my…oh my..oh my. This sounds just decadent and wonderful.

  8. Kathryn says:

    Mmmm… Looks yummy!

  9. […] caramel apple tart with cinnamon ice cream | pete bakes! […]

  10. Oh the tart sounds so amazing! I want some!

  11. mixbakestir says:

    This looks amazing. I can’t wait to try this…and soon. Glad you left the extra caramel sauce in. Beautiful!

  12. […] Caramel apple tart with cinnamon ice cream (yum) from Pete Bakes! […]

  13. Chuck says:

    Yum! Another good recipe. However, I think “Pete Bakes” is turning into “Pete’s Got a Sweet Tooth these days!” Can’t wait to try this.

  14. Andy says:

    Unbelievably delicious and easy to make. My only suggestion would be to double the recipe and make two. Thanks Pete.

  15. Valen says:

    This looks great! What wonderful pictures!

  16. […] remember the cinnamon ice cream from last week? it was so good i had to make a bit more this past weekend. except instead of […]

  17. Andy says:

    I love anything apple, and I’ve been dying to make a tart lately, and so when I saw your post, I knew there was no waiting for fall to come back before I could give this tart a taste! And man did it deliver!!! I’ve also made the exact same cinnamon ice cream last summer, and that is also a sure keeper!

  18. cat says:

    This looks so amazing!

  19. […] the inside. You see, I did succeed in making caramel. I was going to try to shortcut my way through Pete’s luxe caramel apple crumble pie. Then using the same caramel I was going to make some caramel milk chocolate mousse. And before I […]

  20. Bex says:

    I made this recipe the other day for a dinner party, it turned out amazing and was so delicious. This isn’t the first thing i’ve made from your site that i’ve been demanded the recipe for, thank you so much for giving me a place to go for guaranteed incredible recipes.

  21. […] rough recipe for two though. Credit must be given to Donal for the caramel apple cooking method and Peter for inspiration (ok, so this is sort of a lazy version of his recipe without a crust). The crumble […]

  22. Mondo says:

    pete! where are you, buddy? miss your posts about baked goods and the girl. hope all is well with ya. just making some ice cream sandwiches and thought of you. 😀

  23. Chrissy Johnson says:

    I made this tonight–it’s in the oven right now! The first crust I made, I followed the instructions and baked it @ 375 for 30 minutes, and it turned out burned to a crisp. I did it again at half the time, and it turned out perfectly. I’m not sure why my oven differed so much from yours.
    Also, I couldn’t get the sugar to caramelize with water. I tried two times and failed, and on my third attempt, I caramelized without water, and it turned out great. Again-not sure of the discrepency between mine and everyone else’s.
    I wish you were still posting blogs. I love your recipes 🙂

    • Heya this is a good write-up. I will e mail this unique to be able to our mates. I actually stumbled on the following during your search with yahoo and google We will be certain to revisit. many thanks for discussing.

  24. vivetra says:

    it looks really sumptuous. i can’t wait to try it and have a bite. thanks.

  25. vipja says:

    The cinnamon in the ice cream sounds like a great partner with that caramel cinnamon of that tart. I am intrigued by the caramel layer in the tart. I imagine it was divine!

  26. Mark says:

    Amazing looking, mouth watering. I cannot wait to give this a try. Thanks

  27. looks yummy,
    Just wondered what the colours of this could be and, if it has been done, how they were carried through to a super caramel cinny?
    I’m thinking the caramel super cinny would just be a lovely uniform colour of lighter brown?

  28. flg says:

    I found your blog and haven’t stopped drooling ever since. Everything looks delicious!! Thanks for sharing your recipes, they look fantastic, can’t wait to try them at home…

  29. Carol says:

    I made this yesterday with a few modifications. I made a deep dish pie with frozen pie crust. I doubled the recipe to make enough for the pie. It was AMAZING!!!! So yummy!!

    I am posting the pie in my blog today, and giving a link to your blog.


  30. Ruth says:

    So good the testers asked for seconds! Great recipe.

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