This comes from Richard Grausman's book “At Home With the French Classics”. Workman Publishing, New York, 1988.
He tells us a bit of history:
“The tarte Tatin, an upside-down caramelized apple tart, was made famous by the Tatin sisters, who served this tart in their hotel restaurant in the early 1900s. It has been a very popular dessert ever since, and is my favourite apple dessert.\ \ Every chef has his own way of making the tart. Some bake it totally in the oven, while others cook the apples on top of the stove and finish baking it with its pastry in the oven. I use the second method.\ \ The pastry used in this recipe is normal tart pastry, but if you have puff pastry in your freezer, by all means use it, as do most restaurants in France. A half recipe of pâte brisêe is exactly the amount of dough needed, and the remainder can be frozen for another use. If, however, you are not sure of your pastry-rolling skills, use the whole recipe and roll out until ⅛ inch thick before using.\ \ I use less butter and sugar than most tarte Tatin recipes call for, and because of this I occasionally indulge by serving crème fraîche along with the tart.”
Use an equal weight of Bosc pears, peeled and halved, in place of the apples.
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