Saturday, March 22, 2008

Tarte Tatin Detente

When I lived in France many years ago, Tarte Tatin was a favorite selection from the local patisserie. The single layer of thin, overlapping slices of apple, precise as the scales on a fish and sealed over a light crust with a fruit glaze was different than American apple pie, and wonderfully so.

Judging by our latest trip to Paris,Tarte Tatin seems to have evolved since those long-ago days into a new and even more delicious iteration that we enjoyed on more than one occasion on our Paris trip.

Now, when you order Tarte Tatin, it comes piled high with thin slices of very soft fruit and accompanied with creme fraiche to drizzle over the top. It's like American apple pie minus the top crust and half the sugar, offered with savory creme fraiche in place of the cheddar cheese we sometimes serve with it. In the intervening years, we seem to have achieved a compromise in the world of apple desserts, beefing up the apple content but reducing the crust quotient. Treaty negotiators could learn something from this win-win scenario.


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