posted by louisa 07-29-101 12:21 AM
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3 tablespoons (about) ice water
For apple filling:
2/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons butter
6 large apples (about 3 1/4 pounds), peeled, cored, each cut into 8 wedges
Blend flour, sugar and salt in processor. Add butter; cut in using on/off turns until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add 2 1/2 tablespoons water and blend until moist clumps form, adding more water by 1/2 tablespoonfuls if dough is dry. Gather dough into ball; flatten into disk. Wrap dough in plastic; chill until firm enough to roll, at least 30 minutes. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated. Let soften slightly at room temperature before rolling out.)
Preheat oven to 400°F. Fill large skillet with ice cubes; set aside.
Combine sugar and butter in 10-inch-diameter, 2-inch-deep skillet. Cook over medium heat until mixture is deep amber and smooth, stirring often and almost constantly the last 3 minutes, about 16 minutes (after about 12 minutes, butter and sugar will separate and sugar will begin to melt and darken). Immediately place skillet onto ice to stop color from deepening. When caramel is cold and brittle, transfer skillet to work surface.
Arrange apple wedges close together, rounded side down, in concentric circles atop caramel in pan. Press remaining apples, rounded side up, atop first layer. Roll out pastry on lightly floured surface to 12-inch round. Place pastry atop apples, tucking in edges around apples. Bake until pastry is golden brown and juices are bubbling at sides of pan, about 55 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. Place platter over skillet. Using oven mitts as aid, hold platter and skillet together and invert tart onto platter. Rearrange any apples that may have become dislodged. Let stand up to 30 minutes.
Serves 8 to 10.
Note: Setting the skillet that contains the caramel onto a larger skillet of ice cubes is a clever way to prevent the caramel from burning.
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