What a lovely, easy pudding for Sunday Lunch. Using up some of my Greensleeves Apples- a sort of a cross between Golden Delicious and Granny Smith- which were picked in August and stored in an old refridgerator in an outhouse, all I needed to add was a sheet of bought puff pastry, some ground almonds, caster sugar and a tablespoon of quince jelly.
A proper recipe seems superfluous here. You could use any dessert apples to hand, around 5 medium ones, and any suitable jelly to glaze with afterwards, or even a syrup made of sugar and water if you have nothing. Bought puff pastry, the one made with all butter is ESSENTIAL, seems a sensible shortcut.
First, roll out the pastry into a neat circle of at least 30 cm diameter, making it as thin as you dare. Using the base of a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin as a template, mark out and cut a circle of pastry, and place it on a buttered baking sheet then put it in the freezer whilst you do the rest.
Heat the oven to 180C fan. Peel and core the apples, and slice them as thin as you can on a mandoline, aiming for a thickness of something between a 10p and a £1 coin.
Take the pastry trimmings and make a simple twisted border to sit round the pastry circle.
Retrieve the pastry circle from the freezer. Scatter over one dessertspoonful of ground almonds. This is to absorb any excess liquid. My apples are not too juicy, as they have matured a little in store. If you are using very juicy shop bought apples, then just increase the quantity of ground almonds. The heavier your apples are, the more juice they will probably contain.
Layer the apple slices neatly and evenly in a close spiral, starting from the outside and working in. Don’t worry if it looks a bit tall, as it will shrink down when cooking. Lay the pastry border around the edge to finish the tart, and also prevent the apple slices from sliding off.
Sprinkle a good tablespoon of Caster sugar evenly over the top.
Put in the oven and bake for 45 minutes to an hour, or until the pastry looks golden and crisp, and the apples are caramelised on top around their edges.
Boil up a spoon of water with a tablespoon of whichever Jelly you have so that it is thoroughly melted, a pale one is best, and using a pastry brush, glaze the tart neatly, using a wire cooling rack with a plate underneath to catch the drips, so that the pastry doesn’t go soggy.
Eat, and enjoy the plaudits.