This apple tart has it all: a perfectly gooey marzipan frangipane filling, a buttery, crumbly, melt-in-your-mouth shortcrust pastry and a topping of prettily arranged tart apples that round off this gorgeous and delicious fall dessert. Plus, it’s gluten free and super easy to make!
This post has been created in collaboration with Tala. All opinions expressed in the post are my own… plus, there’s a whole lotta deliciousness ahead – so read on. (For more information you can check out my Disclosure Policy.)
It’s the first day of fall, and I don’t know about you, but I am so ready for cosy sweater weather, leaves turning all lovely in various shades of orange, red and yellow, and – of course – fall baking.
To celebrate the start of this wonderful season of apple pies, pumpkin everything and almost-too-much cinnamon, I’ve teamed up with Tala bakeware to make the ultimate apple tart, packed full of deliciousness, pretty colours and taste-bud-tingling textures.
Tala is, hands down, one of my favourite bakeware brands, and you might remember it from my Epic Triple Chocolate Cake and Vegan Sticky Buns recipes. And they have absolutely everything you might need to bake the most amazing tarts – from the tart tins that give an even bake, to gorgeous ceramic bowls and super handy (and super cute) tiny spatulas.
This particular apple tart will knock your socks off, with its crumbly and buttery pastry, gooey marzipan-flavoured frangipane filling and tart apples. So, without further ado, let’s have a closer look at what makes it so very amazing.
Before we get to the bits and bobs of making this wonderful tart – if you like what you’re seeing, subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date on the latest recipes and tips!
What makes this apple tart so amazing?
1. The marzipan frangipane. I love marzipan. It’s one of my favourite sweets, and incorporating it into the frangipane takes this apple tart to a whole new (mouthwatering, insanely delicious) level. Once baked, the frangipane is perfectly gooey, buttery and it packs a powerful flavour punch. It’s also not too sweet, so it really allows the marzipan to shine through.
2. The buttery, crumbly, melt-in-your-mouth pastry. The pastry is both sturdy and crisp enough to hold the rich filling without any problems, and also buttery and crumbly enough to melt on your tongue. The Tala Performance 25 cm (10 inch) tart tin ensures an even bake and a pastry case that’s evenly golden all over.
3. The tart apples. The sweetness of the frangipane is perfectly balanced by the tart apples. They’re sliced into about 3-4mm slices, but the halves and quarters are kept together, resulting in a tart that is as pretty to look at as it is delicious to eat.
4. It’s gluten free! That’s right: this beauty is 100% gluten free and 1000% fabulous. If you didn’t know it, you honestly couldn’t possibly guess it’s gluten free.
5. Super easy to make. While the finished tart is a real showstopper, it’s REALLY simple to make. The pastry is made by hand in no time, and the frangipane filling is made entirely in a food processor in about 5 minutes. Assembling and decorating the tart is equally easy: all you need to do is place the sliced apple quarters and halves snugly next to each other, sprinkle a bit of flaked almonds on top… and that’s it!
6. Drop-dead gorgeous. I don’t think this one needs an explanation. Just look at it!!
Note: the whole recipe, including the ingredient quantities, can be found at the bottom of this page – just scroll down to the bottom, or click the ‘Jump to Recipe’ button at the top of this post.
How do you make the gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry?
Making the gluten free shortcrust pastry truly couldn’t be easier:
- In a large bowl (like this gorgeous Tala Originals stoneware mixing bowl), mix together the gluten free flour blend,
- xanthan gum, and
- a pinch of salt. Mix well until combined.
- Add softened butter.
- Using your fingertips, work the butter into the dry ingredients until you get a mixture resembling breadcrumbs or wet sand.
- Sift in the icing sugar (maybe using this Tala Indigo and Ivory sifter) and mix well.
- Add one egg and one egg yolk (for extra richness) and mix well with a wooden spoon – this set of 3 wooden spoons from Tala is super handy.
- Once the dough starts coming together, turn it out onto the work surface and give it a knead.
- The final pastry dough should be smooth and malleable, without being either sticky or crumbly. Wrap it in cling film and refrigerate for about 30 minutes before using.
A side note: can we just take a second to talk about how gorgeous these Tala Originals storage tins for plain flour and self-raising flour are??? I’m usually the type of person to just keep my flours in the original bags, but these flour storage tins just might convince me to be more organised.
How do you make the marzipan frangipane?
To make the marzipan frangipane:
- Combine marzipan, softened butter and caster sugar in the bowl of a food processor. (Bonus points if you use this beautiful Tala Indigo and Ivory dry cook’s measure.)
- Process until smooth, then add two eggs and one egg yolk.
- Process until combined – the mixture should be very soft and smooth at this point… and smell like a marzipan dream.
- Add almond flour and gluten free flour blend.
- Process until combined.
- The final marzipan frangipane filling should be thick, but still spreadable. Set it aside until needed – now, it’s time to start assembling the tart! *cue the confetti*
Assembling the apple tart: lining the tart tin with the pastry
First up, we need to prep the pastry case. To do this:
- Roll out the chilled pastry on a lightly floured surface. I actually like to roll it out on a piece of lightly floured cling film, as it allows me to easily transfer the pastry into the tin – as you’ll see in a moment.
- Roll out the pastry until 3-4mm thin. I’ve used this Tala Originals revolving rolling pin.
- Then, transfer the rolled-out pastry into the tart tin. This recipe makes a 10 inch/25cm tart, and I’ve used this amazing Tala Performance 25 cm (10 inch) tart tin.
- The cling film makes it super easy to transfer the pastry into the tin without any fear of tearing.
- Make sure that the pastry is snug against the sides of the tart tin.
- Remove the cling film, and
- roll the rolling pin gently across the top of the tart tin – this is the easiest way to cut away any excess pastry.
- In the final step, I like to gently press the pastry into the individual grooves of the tart tin. This extra step isn’t 100% mandatory, but it gives the finished tart a much nicer, more polished look. Then, the pastry needs to chill in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes.
Do you need to blind bake the pastry?
For this particular tart: no, you don’t need to blind bake the pastry.
The reason for this is the long baking time required in order for the frangipane filling to bake all the way through and set into gooey perfection. If you blind baked the pastry on top of that, you’d be left with a dry, almost burnt pastry shell.
However, if you want to use this pastry in other tart recipes, where the filling either isn’t baked or requires a shorter baking time, you will need to blind bake the pastry before filling. In that case, Tala has these super handy ceramic baking beans you can use!
Assembling the apple tart: filling and decorations
Once the pastry is chilled, we can proceed with the second part of assembling the tart:
- Fill the pastry with the marzipan frangipane and smooth it out into an even layer – bonus points if you use these super cute Tala mini silicone spatulas!
- Arrange the sliced apple quarters and halves on top,
- until you’ve covered the whole tart. For a 10 inch/25cm tart, you should need 4-5 medium apples.
- Sprinkle the top generously with flaked almonds,
- and then the tart is ready to be baked!
Which apples are best for apple tart?
This apple tart looks best if you use apples with a red or orange skin. You also want quite tart apples, so that they balance out the sweetness of the frangipane filling.
I’ve tested Pink Lady, Braeburn and Jazz apple varieties, and they all work really well.
How long do you bake the apple tart?
The tart requires about 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes in an oven pre-heated to 350ºF (180ºC). I like to also bake my tarts (and pies) on a pre-heated baking tray or sheet, as this prevents any soggy bottoms.
The long baking time is required to fully set the frangipane filling. Don’t be tempted to take the tart out of the oven too soon – it will result in a pale pastry case and a runny frangipane.
To check for doneness: insert a toothpick or skewer into the middle of the tart. It will come out covered in frangipane (don’t expect a clean toothpick, as that would mean that your tart is over-baked), but the frangipane on the toothpick should be quite thick, not runny or gloopy.
Do you have to cool the apple tart completely before serving?
I definitely recommend that you cool the apple tart all the way to room temperature before slicing and serving. Cutting into a warm or hot tart, before the frangipane has had time to firm up and set, can result in a messy disaster.
It’s best to cool the tart in the baking tin completely, and then remove it from the tin only once it’s at room temperature.
And that’s pretty much all you need to know in order to bake the best apple tart of your life (I might be biased… but this truly is the most delicious apple tart I’ve ever tasted).
Happy baking, friends!
If you like what you’re seeing, subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date on the latest recipes and tips!
Apple Tart with Marzipan Frangipane (Gluten Free)
For gluten free shortcrust pastry:
- 300 g (2 1/2 cups) plain gluten free flour blend (I used Doves Farm Freee plain gluten free flour blend, which doesn't contain added xanthan gum. You can also mix your own with 50% white rice flour, 30% potato starch and 20% maize flour by weight.)
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 100 g (3/4 stick + 1 tbsp) unsalted butter, softened
- 90 g (3/4 cup) icing sugar
- 1 UK medium/US large egg, room temperature
- 1 UK medium/US large egg yolk, room temperature
For marzipan frangipane:
- 170 g (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 150 g (5 1/3 oz) marzipan (Ideally, use a natural marzipan with no added dyes or colourings.)
- 175 g (7/8 cup) caster/superfine sugar
- 2 UK medium/US large eggs, room temperature
- 1 UK medium/US large egg yolk, room temperature
- 250 g (2 1/2 cups) almond flour or finely ground almonds
- 120 g (1 cup) plain gluten free flour blend (I used Doves Farm Freee plain gluten free flour blend, which doesn't contain added xanthan gum. You can also mix your own with 50% white rice flour, 30% potato starch and 20% maize flour by weight.)
You will also need:
- 4-5 medium apples (I recommend using tart apples with a red or orange skin, such as Pink Lady, Braeburn or Jazz.)
- juice of 1 lemon
- 30 g (1/3 cup) flaked almonds
For gluten free shortcrust pastry:
- In a large bowl, mix together the gluten free flour blend, xanthan gum and salt until well combined.
- Add the softened butter and, using your fingertips, work it into the dry ingredients until you get a mixture resembling breadcrumbs or wet sand.
- Sift in the icing sugar and mix well.
- Add the egg and egg yolk, and mix well with a wooden spoon. Once the dough starts coming together, turn it out onto the work surface (no need to flour it) and give it a knead, until you get a smooth and malleable dough, which isn't sticky or crumbly.
- Wrap the pastry in cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.
For marzipan frangipane:
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine the softened butter, marzipan and caster/superfine sugar. Process until smooth.
- Add the eggs and egg yolk, and process until combined – the mixture should be very soft and smooth at this point.
- Add the almond flour and gluten free flour blend. Process until combined. The final marzipan frangipane filling should be thick, but still spreadable.
- Set aside until needed.
Assembling the tart: lining the tart tin with the pastry
- Get a 25cm/10 inch tart tin with a loose bottom ready to have on hand.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the chilled pastry into a rough circle about 3-4mm thin. You want the pastry circle to be larger than the tart tin by at least 5 cm/2 inches, so as to account for the tin sides.Tip: Roll out the pastry on a piece of lightly floured cling film, which will allow you to easily transfer the pastry into the tin without any fear of tearing.
- Transfer the rolled-out pastry into the tart tin and make sure that the pastry is snug against the bottom and the sides of the tin. Remove the cling film (if using), and roll the rolling pin gently across the top of the tart tin – this is the easiest way to cut away any excess pastry.
- Gently press the pastry into the individual grooves of the fluted edge of the tart tin, for a more polished final look.
- Chill in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes.
Assembling the tart: filling and decorating
- Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC) with a large baking tray or sheet on the middle oven rack.
- Halve and quarter the apples (you want a nice mix of halves and quarters to make the tart design more interesting). Cut them into 3-4mm thin slices, but keep the halves and quarters together. (See post for photos.)Drizzle with lemon juice to prevent oxidation and browning, and set aside until needed.
- Fill the chilled pastry with the marzipan frangipane and smooth it out into an even layer.
- Arrange the sliced apple quarters and halves on top, placing them snugly next to each other, until you’ve covered the whole tart. Sprinkle the top generously with flaked almonds.
Baking and cooling the tart:
- Place the tart on the hot baking tray/sheet and bake at 350ºF (180ºC) for 1 hour 10 minutes - 1 hour 20 minutes.To check for doneness: insert a toothpick or skewer into the middle of the tart. It will come out covered in frangipane (don’t expect a clean toothpick, as that would mean that your tart is over-baked), but the frangipane on the toothpick should be quite thick, not runny or gloopy.Tip: If the top of the tart starts browning too quickly, cover it with a sheet of aluminium foil, shiny side up, and continue baking until done.
- Allow the baked tart to cool completely to room temperature on a wire cooling rack, then remove from the tart tin, and serve.
- The apple tart keeps well in a closed container in a cool, dry place for 3-4 days.