Classic Apple Tart

You may ask why a famous French dessert is in a book about Basque cuisine. Well, there are two main reasons for this. First, the Basque region has an abundance of delicious apples and second, I just love this recipe. What more can I say?

Serves: 6


  • 200g caster sugar
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • few sprigs lemon thyme
  • 5–6 dessert apples, peeled, cored and halved
  • 500g all-butter puff pastry
  • plain flour, to dust

To make the tatin, pour the sugar into a heavy-based ovenproof frying pan with a 20cm diameter base and add a couple of tablespoons of water. Stir to mix, then place over a low heat and cook very gently, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved.

Stop stirring, increase the heat to high, and bubble until you have a dark golden caramel. Add the butter, stirring quickly until smooth, then put the apples, cut side up, into the pan, with the thyme. Return to a low heat and cook for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool completely.

Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured surface and cut a round that’s a bit bigger than the pan. Tuck the pastry over the top of the apples so it sits snuggly round the side of the pan.

Bake for 25–30 minutes until the pastry is golden. Leave to stand for 10 minutes before turning out onto a plate and serving with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Recipe taken from Basque by José Pizarro
In Basque, José Pizarro shows readers how to create some of the best-loved dishes from the Basque Country at home. He will dispel the myth that creating tapas and traditional Spanish fare is scary, and show you how to take the great experience of being in the little bars of San Sebastián into your own kitchen. The food of this region is wonderful to share with your family and friends – but it’s also about fun, informality and not being a slave to your stove! Set to the backdrop of the stunning views of San Sebastián and the rest of Basque Country, you’ll really feel like you’re on a magical holiday in Spain. José has also put together some menus and drinks suggestions to help you plan, shop, cook and, most importantly, enjoy this wonderful way of eating and socialising.

You can purchase Basque at

Published by Hardie Grant Books.

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