Apple and Browned Butter Tart with Lavender Crust
Author: Inspired by Better Homes & Gardens
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon lavender
- ¾ cup earth balance
- 1½ tablespoons cold water
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons butter
- ½ cup sugar
- 5 Honeycrisp apples, cored and cut into 8 wedges each (3½ pounds)
- ½ cup butter
- 3 egg yolks
- ⅓ cup sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon almond extract
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- First, make the lavender shortbread crust
- Combine the flour, sugar, salt, and lavender in a large bowl. use your fingers (or a pastry cutter, if you're fancy) to work in the earth balance until it is in the size of peas.
- Combine the water and vanilla, then stir this mixture into the dry ingredients. stir everything until it comes together into a ball (you might need to use your hands to make it all come together, but don't work it too much).
- Form the dough into a disc and wrap it with plastic wrap. refrigerate it for 30 minutes.
- press the chilled dough into a greased 11-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. put it in the freezer to chill for another 30 minutes.
- Towards the end of the freezing time, preheat the oven to 375°f. put in the tart and bake it until it is lightly golden, about 15 minutes. let the crust cool completely on a wire rack.
- Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
- In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Stir in ½ cup sugar. Cook and stir constantly, until sugar begins to brown. Add apple wedges. Cook and stir for 10 to 12 minutes or until apples are lightly caramelized. Remove skillet from heat.
- In a small saucepan, melt ½ cup butter over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low. Continue to cook, without stirring, for 5 to 6 minutes more or until butter becomes brown and fragrant. Remove from heat; cool slightly.
- In a medium bowl, beat egg yolks, ⅓ cup sugar, salt, and almond extract with an electric mixer on medium speed until mixture is thickened. Beat in ⅓ cup flour on low speed. Add browned butter and beat on low speed until just combined.
- Spread custard mixture into pre-baked crust. Remove apple wedges from skillet with a slotted spoon and arrange in an attractive pattern atop the custard. Drizzle any remaining cooking liquid in the skillet over the apples. Cover edges of pastry with foil. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until custard is puffed and set in the center. Makes 12 to 16 servings.