Wednesday, June 25, 2008

apple crostada.

I am in love with all things apple. It really doesn't matter what time of year it is (I know most people associate apple desserts with autumn)- I am almost always in the mood for them. One thing I have learned when baking is that it is very hard to mess up an apple dessert. As long as you have the combination of either brown or white sugar, butter, cinnamon, and apples, it will almost always be good. I love them in all forms: pies, cobblers, turnovers, cakes, crisps, breads... you get the idea.

Yesterday morning I decided to make a recipe that I posted on Design is Mine awhile back that just looked so delicious and beautiful: an Apple Crostata by one of the cooks I trust most, Mrs. Ina Garten. Her recipes, especially her baking ones, always seem to come out perfect, and this was no exception. It was quite fun to make and turned out absolutely delectable.

Apple Crostata: by Ina Garten


For the pastry (2 tarts)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated or superfine sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 pound very cold unsalted butter, diced
For the filling (1 tart)
1/2 pounds McIntosh, Macoun, or Empire apples
1/4 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated or superfine sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (1/2 stick), diced


For the pastry, place the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse a few times to combine. Add the butter and toss quickly with your fingers to coat each cube of butter with the flour. Pulse 12 to 15 times, or until the butter is the size of peas. With the motor running, add the 1/4 cup ice water all at once through the feed tube. Keep hitting the pulse button to combine, but stop the machine just before the dough comes together. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured board and form into 2 disks. Wrap with plastic and refrigerate one of the disks for at least an hour. Freeze the rest of the pastry.
*Note: You can also do this without a food processor, like I did. Just combine all the ingredients except the cold water in a bowl with a pastry blender or two knives. Slowly add the cold water and form a dough.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Roll the pastry into an 11-inch circle on a lightly floured surface. Transfer it to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
For the filling, peel, core, and quarter the apples. Cut each quarter into 3 chunks. Toss the chunks with the orange zest. Cover the tart dough with the apple chunks, leaving a 1 1/2-inch border.
Combine the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and allspice in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture is crumbly. Pour into a bowl and rub it with your fingers until it starts holding together. Sprinkle evenly on the apples. Gently fold the border over the apples, pleating it to make a circle.
Bake the crostata for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the crust is golden and the apples are tender. Let the tart cool for 5 minutes, then use 2 large spatulas to transfer it to a wire rack.


house and home said...

i made that earlier this year. it was delicious and easy. thanks for reminding me to make it again!!

onesilentwinter said...

gorgeous photos- i am enjoying has a great feel to it!

Carrie Crocker said...

holy crap that looks delish! I am now in love with your blog- Good Job!