Some good friends of ours are lucky enough to spend their days living on a beautiful property in the Blue Mountains. Every time we visit them I return rejuvenated in a way that a weekend in Sydney just can’t do.
Nestled on the edge of an escarpment overlooking the red cliffs and hazy blue hills it’s a truly special location.
Add to that a large orchard, overflowing vege patch and several chickens and you’ve basically got home produce heaven and relaxation heaven all in one.
They came to stay with us recently and gifted us with a pile of beautiful red apples from their orchard, along with fresh eggs.
Fresh eggs. Laid that morning. As a city girl I find such things an absolute wonder!
Along with the idea that you can actually grow proper fruit yourself. Successfully.
How beautiful are those apples?
We made short work of the eggs, but took a little longer to eat our way through the apples.
I was wondering what I could make with them when all of sudden, the idea for an apple frangipane tart popped into my head.
I love frangipane tarts. Not least because, aside from being super tasty, they are ridiculously easy to cook. That means that even for a (very) amateur baker like me, it’s pretty easy to get it right first time and impress a whole bunch people while you’re at it.
Frangipane, for those not already in the know, is basically a tart filling made with almonds. Add other good stuff like butter, eggs and sugar.
The only downside to a frangipane tart is that the recipe generally calls for a pretty much the whole block of butter. Don’t get me wrong, I love butter as much as the next person but I’m not so keen on my entire calorie requirement for the day being used up by one tart.
This version puts the emphasis on the fruit as the star with the frangipane being a delicious accompaniment. It’s light and yummy; containing just enough butter and sugar to still taste like a good frangipane should.
Clocking in at under 300 calories for an entire tart, I’d say is pretty damn good. About a 1/4 of those are apple calories too, so really it’s even less!!
I should note that although I’ve used apple here, don’t let that limit you. I’ve made delicious frangipane tarts using nectarines, pears, plums, peaches, pretty much any stone fruit will work as do berries or figs. So go nuts with whatever is cheap at delicious at the time of making.
Despite minimal effort this tart is superb.
I promise any of your friends and family that are lucky enough to get a serve will be very impressed.
And begging for more.
The apple is sweet and tart, happily complimented by the warm soft, nutty frangipane. It’s mouthful after mouthful of pure comforting joy.
It’s best consumed warm straight from the oven with dab of lovely thick Greek yoghurt while curled up on the couch in your favourite pajamas and with a big cup of tea.
On seconds thoughts, forget your friends, save them all for yourself!
If you do give it a try then take a snap of it and tag #thehealthygourmande on Instagram or Twitter. I’d love to see your version of it!
- 1/2 cup (60gm) almond meal
- 20 gm plain flour
- 1/4 cup (45gm) brown sugar, plus 1 extra tbsp
- 1/8 tsp baking powder
- 1 vanilla bean (or substitute 1 tsp vanilla extract)
- 45 gm butter, softened
- 1 free range egg
- 1 tbsp lemon rind
- 4 (400gm) apples, quartered and cored
- Preheat the oven to 160C
- Beat the softened butter and sugar in a food processor (or use your milkshake whizzer if like me you don't have one!)
- Add the egg, almond meal, flour, baking powder and lemon rind and process until just combined
- Spoon the mixture into 4 lightly greased loose-bottomed tart tins (or 1 larger one)
- Finely slice slits into the apples leaving one end un-cut
- Toss the apples with the extra tablespoon of brown sugar then press the apples into the tart mixture. Be generous with the apples, you should be able to fit an entire apple in each tart tin
- Bake for 25-30 mins or until cooked
- Leave to cool in the tins
- Serve with thick greek yoghurt, a tiny drizzle of maple syrup and handfuls of fresh blueberries
- If you use a single tart tin the tart will take 5-10 mins longer to cook. The tarts are cooked when a skewer comes out clean.
- Calories 296
- Carbs (gm) 30
- Fat (gm) 17
- Protein (gm) 7
- Fibre (gm) 5