French Tarte Tatin
Melt-in-your-mouth, richly caramelized apples on a crisp, flaky pastry. A delicacy discovered by mistake: in the late 19th century, the Tatin sisters forgot the crust for their apple tart, so they decided to add it at the end when the apples were cooked...
Preheat the oven to 180 °C (convection). Wash and peel the apples. Cut them in half and use the tip of a paring knife to core them.
In a 10-inch cake pan, melt the butter over low heat. When it starts to foam, pour the sugar over it and allow to cook over low heat without stirring until it turns a light caramel color.
Remove from heat and arrange the apple halves in a ring pattern in the pan, cut side down. Return to the stove and cook over low heat for 10 minutes more. When cooking is complete, lightly press down on the apples with a spatula.
Split the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and use the tip of a knife to remove the seeds. Sprinkle them over the apples. Do the same with the cinnamon. Turn off the heat. Cover the apples with the flaky pastry crust. Gently slide the edges of the crust between the inner edge of the pan and the outer edges of the apples.
Unmold the tart on a serving platter. Enjoy it warm, served with a generous spoonful of crème fraîche.