Freestyle Apple Tarts | Midwest Living

Freestyle Apple Tarts

Freestyle Apple Tarts

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  • Makes: 6 servings
  • Hands On 50 mins
  • Total Time 1 hr

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This recipe from Iowa's Rapid Creek Cidery restaurant looks daunting, but it's actually five very simple parts that are easily made ahead. (You'll end up with extra candied nuts; they're great alone or with cheese.)


  • 1 egg white (reserve yolk)
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala*
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups walnut pieces
  • Caramel
  • 1/3 cup purchased dulce de leche
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Yogurt
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
  • 1 vanilla bean paste** or pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • Pastry
  • 1 14 - 17 - ounce package frozen, thawed puff pastry, preferably all-butter***
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 egg yolk (reserved from Nuts)
  • Fruit
  • 1/4 cup apple juice
  • 2 medium Honeycrisp apples, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium fresh pear, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala*


  1. Nuts For nuts: Preheat oven to 325 degrees . In a large bowl, beat egg white and water to stiff peaks. Fold in walnut pieces. Sprinkle with sugar, garam masala and the kosher salt. Stir to combine. Spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake until lightly browned, about 20 minutes, stirring once halfway through baking. Cool on a wire rack.
  2. Caramel For caramel: In a small saucepan, combine dulce de leche and butter. Bring to a boil, whisking until smooth. Add cream and return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 2 minutes to lightly thicken. Remove from heat. Stir in bourbon and the kosher salt.
  3. Yogurt For yogurt: In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, honey and vanilla bean paste.
  4. Pastry For pastry: Preheat oven to 400 degrees . On a lightly floured surface, unfold pastry. Roll to a roughly 8x16-inch rectangle. (If package has two pastry sheets, stack them before rolling.) Cut into six rectangles. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. In a small bowl, beat together egg yolk and water; brush on pastry. Bake until puffed and golden, about 15 minutes.
  5. Fruit For fruit: In a 12-inch nonreactive skillet, bring juice to a boil. Add apples, pear, sugar and garam masala; stir to combine. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently, until apples are very tender and mixture is syrupy, 12 to 15 minutes.
  6. Assembly To assemble: Spoon some yogurt on a plate. Top with a pastry rectangle, fruit, caramel and nuts.


  • *What is garam masala? Garam masala is a common Indian spice blend. If you can't find it, use a big pinch cinnamon, plus a pinch each ground cloves, black pepper, cumin, coriander and nutmeg.


  • **What is vanilla bean paste? Vanilla bean paste is an easy way to get vanilla flecks without the hassle or expense of scraping seeds from a vanilla bean. Look for it in specialty stores or online; Nielsen-Massey is a good brand.


  • ***What is all-butter puff pastry? All-butter puff pastry is extra flavorful and has fewer additives. Look for Dufour brand at Whole Foods. Trader Joe's sells a more affordable version, but only in the fall and holiday baking season.

Nutrition Facts

(Freestyle Apple Tarts)

Servings Per Recipe 6, chol. (mg) 141, Thiamin (mg) 0, sat. fat (g) 26, Riboflavin (mg) 0, carb. (g) 71, Niacin (mg) 0, Monounsaturated fat (g) 6, Pyridoxine (Vit. B6) (mg) 0, Polyunsaturated fat (g) 9, Folate (µg) 26, Trans fatty acid (g) 1, Cobalamin (Vit. B12) (µg) 0, fiber (g) 4, sodium (mg) 588, sugar (g) 47, Potassium (mg) 212, pro. (g) 12, calcium (mg) 136, cal. (kcal) 783, vit. A (IU) 1536, iron (mg) 2, Fat, total (g) 51, vit. C (mg) 4

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