Friday, 19 August 2011

Let the pictures do the talking

I'm at a little lost for words...

so, I shall leave the pictures to do most of the talking...

"Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful;
they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul.   Luther Burbank"

Here's a basket of pink roses, gerberas, carnations, that was delivered to my doorstep a few nights ago. What a lovely surprise! I can't even remember when was the last time I have received must have been a decade ago. Thank you AK and AM, you have certainly brightened this aunty's day, and many days that followed. Oh how I love the fuchsia theme :) 

Those flowers certainly make me feel better, so much so that I have chosen to bake an apple frangipane tart...something that requires a little extra effort to put together. I don't even mind the trouble.

Besides flowers, an apple a day is something I need to keep myself healthy. This is the first time I am baking something with apples. Yes, the very first time since five years into my baking journey. Pardon my ignorant, I didn't know that the skin would turn a ugly dull brown after spending 45mins in the oven. Next time I should just peel the apples. Most apple tart recipes would recommend a good coating of apricot jam over the apple slices when the tart is out from the oven. I never like glossy looking pies or tarts, so I skip the step and dust it with some icing sugar instead.

A rather cheery and sunshine looking apple tart, don't you think so? I wish I could share it with my friends...hey, someone should start a food dispatch service here!

The pastry crust and frangipane filling (pastry cream made with grounded almond along with sugar, butter, and eggs) tastes really good...but I can't say the same to the baked apple slices. Well, they are a bit soft...a texture I am not used to associating it with crunchy, juicy apples. The tart is best served on the day it is baked, somehow the crust will lose some of its crisp when left over night...could it be due to the high humidity? (If this happens, just warm it in the oven and the tart will taste like freshly baked.)

I am submitting this apple frangipane tart to Aspiring Bakers #10: Easy as Pie (August 2011) hosted by Janine of Not the Kitchen Sink! Thanks Janine for hosting this round and Small Small Baker for championing this monthly baking event!

I thought I would leave the pictures to speak for themselves, alas, I am the one who did most of the talking (*^_^*)

Apple Frangipane Tart

(makes one 18cm tart)

pastry crust:
40g unsalted butter, soften at room temperature
30g caster sugar
1 tablespoon (15g) lightly beaten egg
20g almond powder (grounded almond)
80g cake flour

60g unsalted butter, soften at room temperature
50g brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
80g almond powder (grounded almond)
10g cake flour

2 apples, cut into thin slices
15g unsalted butter, melted
icing sugar for dusting

  • Lightly grease an 18cm tart pan (with removable base) with butter, set aside.
  • Toast almond powder at 100 degC for 10 mins. Stirring in between. Let cool.
pastry crust:
  • With a manual whisk, cream butter and sugar till light and fluffy. Dribble in the egg, whisk and mix well. Add in the almond powder and fold with a spatula. Sieve over the flour and fold in with the spatula. Gather the mixture to form a dough.
  • Flatten the pastry dough to form a round disc. Roll out dough in between 2 sheets of baking paper(I used two plastic sheets cut-out from clear plastic bags) to about 23cm in diameter. Remove one side of the baking paper/plastic sheet. Gently lift up the other sheet of baking paper/plastic (with the pastry dough still on it) and flip the pastry dough over the prepared tart pan. Remove the baking paper/plastic sheet. (Don't worry if some parts of the pastry broke off. It can be moulded easily back into the tart pan.) Mould the pastry into the tart pan, smoothing the edges and the rim carefully. (If the pastry is too soft to handle, chill the rolled out dough in the fridge for 10~15 mins before moulding.)
  • Prick the pastry surface with a fork (this helps to prevent the pastry from puffing up when baking, refer picture of a baked pastry crust here). Cover and chill the moulded pastry in the fridge for 20mins (this helps to prevent the pastry from shrinking too much after baking.)
  • Brush the top of the rim with some egg wash (optional). Bake in pre-heated oven at 180 degC for 10~12 mins or until the pastry is lightly golden browned. Let cool and set aside.
  • With a whisk, cream butter and brown sugar till the mixture turns fluffy. Add in the egg gradually, mix well each time the egg is added.
  • Add in grounded almond powder. Fold with a spatula till well incorporated. Sieve over the flour onto the mixture. Mix with the spatula. Add in vanilla extract and mix well.
  • Spread 1/3 of the filling onto the cooled pastry crust. Line with some apple slices. Spread the remaining filling evenly, ensure the edges are filled up. Arrange apple slices on top. (Make sure the apple slices are well drained.) Brush the melted butter over the apple slices.
  • Bake in pre-heated oven at 170 degC for 40 ~ 45mins, until the edges and filling turn golden brown. Leave to cool for a few minutes. Unmould and let cool completely, and dust with some icing sugar. Best serve on the day it is baked.
Recipe Source: adapted from Delicious!! Baked Cakes, Ikuko Omori


Yummy Bakes said...

Very colorful flowers - certainly brightens any recipient's day. The Apple Frangipane Tart looks delicious.

Angelic Heart~ said...

wow! wonderful tart like blooming flower :)

Unknown said...

This is so sweet! I love the bright colours of the basket and the flowers. Yum... apple tart... my favorite.

ann low said...

Lovely basket of flowers. The Apple Frangipane Tart looks very yummy too.

Angel @ Cook.Bake.Love said...

Both the flowers and tart look great.

U sure this is the first time u bake with apple? Reckon u baked apple muffin before or I remember wrongly :p

Happy Flour said...

Lovely flowers. The apple tart make me hungry for a slice. :)

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Angel, you are right, I have totally forgotten I have made apple muffins before. It was so long ago that it didn't register in my memory, lol!

Unknown said...

Beautiful flowers.... beautiful apple tart ^_^

Angel @ Cook.Bake.Love said...


I am your \fans so I can remember. Kekeke.

happybowl said...

lovely lovely lovely flowers, yum yum yummy tart...

Baking Fiend said...

Here I am craving for a pie and I see your post! oh my... lovely lovely apple frangipane tart you have!

Edith said...

so beautiful flowers you have gotten. always nice to have friends that think of you isn't it?

Anonymous said...

I've just being looking through your blog and you've made some amazing stuff! I am a sucker for a good cake and there's several on here that had me drooling!
I hope to reach a standard such as yours one day!


hanushi said...

Such a pretty tart!!! You are still as skillful as before! :)

Baker in Indonesia said...

Thanks for this recipe! I used it for creating a salak (snake fruit) tart. I was having trouble finding any baking recipes for salak, so I tried looking for apple ones. The almond complimented the fruit perfectly! I used almond extract instead of vanilla and also topped the tart with almonds. Family and friends loved it!