French Apple Tart with Frangipane

French Apple Tart

1 recipe Pastry Dough (recipe follows)
1 recipe Almond-Hazelnut Frangipane (recipe follows)
4 Honey Crisp apples, peeled, cored, halved and sliced 1/8” thick
¼ c. Sugar or Vanilla Sugar
2 ½ Tbs. Cold Unsalted Butter, cut into thin slices
½ c. Apricot Jam
2 Tbs. Apple Brandy

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

On a lightly floured surface roll out dough into a 13-inch round and fit it into a 10-inch tart tin with a removable fluted rim, trimming the excess.

Spread the frangipane over the bottom of the tart shell in an even layer. Arrange the apples decoratively over the frangipane, overlapping them like tiles on a roof. Sprinkle the sugar on top of the apples, top with butter cubes and bake in the middle of the oven for 55 minutes or until the crust is cooked through and the apples are golden.

Heat the apricot jam in a small saucepan over low heat until warmed through. Turn off the flame and add the apple brandy. Brush liberally over the tart while it’s still warm from the oven. Serve with vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.

Pastry Dough

1 stick very cold unsalted butter, cut into ½” cubes
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
2 Tbs. Sugar
1 Egg yolk
3 to 5 Tbs. ice water

To blend by hand: Blend together flour, butter, and salt in a bowl with your fingertips or a pastry blender until most of mixture resembles coarse meal (roughly pea-size lumps). Drizzle 2 tablespoons ice water evenly over and gently stir with a fork until incorporated.

To blend in a food processor: Pulse together flour, butter, salt, and sugar in a food processor until most of mixture resembles coarse meal (roughly like wet sand). Add the egg yolk and pulse until combined (mixture should resemble pea-sized lumps). Add the ice water one tablespoon at a time and pulse until incorporated. Mixture should start to come together on its own.

Test mixture: Gently squeeze a small handful: it should hold together without crumbling apart. If it doesn't, add more ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring or pulsing 2 or 3 times after each addition until incorporated (keep testing). If you overwork mixture or add too much water, pastry will be tough.

Form dough: Turn out onto a work surface lightly dusted with flour and divide into 4 portions. With heel of your hand, smear each portion once in a forward motion to help distribute fat. Gather dough together and form it into a disk. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator until firm for at least one hour.

Yield: 1 (9-inch) pie crust or a 10 to 11-inch tart crust
Dough can be chilled up to 1 day.

Almond-Hazelnut Frangipane

3 tsp. Unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 c. sugar
½ c. Slivered Almonds
½ c. Shelled Hazelnuts
1 Tbs. Flour
1 tsp. Cornstarch
1 large Egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 tsp. Vanilla extract

Heat a skillet over medium heat and toast the almonds and hazelnuts until just golden, taking care to not burn them. Set aside and cool the nuts to room temperature.
In a food processor, process the toasted almonds and hazelnuts until finely ground. Add the other ingredients and process until smooth. Let the mixture sit for 15 minutes before spreading it in the tart shell.