french apple tart

Posted by on February 9, 2012 in cook | 6 comments

I know, I know, yesterday I wrote all about how sugar makes me depressed and how I'm continuing to eat as well as I can, and now I'm going to talk about this lovely, sweet, decadent dessert. Really, though, I don't think I'm as hypocritical as I might seem. I've been busy doing a lot of work around the house and just wanted a break to do something quiet and pleasant, like bake. Plus, I will probably be sharing a large portion of this tart with a friend when I see her tomorrow, and I didn't use too much sugar and will probably be happy with just a small slice. Have I justified myself enough now?  

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I can't claim that this is authentically French, but I did make it in a French tart pan, and used creme fraiche, hence the "french" in the name. There's a hint of cinnamon throughout, and I used a new to me apple, called Pacific Rose. The last few years it seems that there are more apple varieties available in my local grocery store. I'm not actually a huge apple fan, but baked in a tangy custard with a nutty almond crust? Well, considered me converted to the apple.  

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I used coconut sugar in the filling, just because I bought some awhile ago, thinking that it might be healthier than refined sugar, but it probably isn't any better. You should be able to substitute the sweetener of your choosing. This was an experiment, but I'm happy to say that it was a successful one! So this time I'm sharing an actual, real recipe. How do you like them apples? Oh, and it should go without saying that it's completely gluten-free. 

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French Apple Tart

1 ½ cups almond meal
½ t. vanilla paste
4 T. butter, melted
2 T. sugar (raw, brown or white)
Dash of cinnamon

2-3 apples, peeled and sliced thin
1 c. crème fraiche
1 large egg
1 t. vanilla paste
¼ c. coconut sugar (or sugar of your choice)
½ t. cinnamon
2 T. coconut flour

4 T. butter, softened
2 T. almond meal
¼ c.  brown sugar
Dash of cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

For the crust: Combine all ingredients and press into the bottom and up the sides of a 14” x 4.5” tart pan. Bake for 5 minutes.

For the filling: Combine all the ingredients except for the apple slices. Arrange the apple slices on the crust in the pan. Carefully pour the cream mixture over the apples.

For the topping: Mash all the ingredients together with a fork. It will be crumbly! Sprinkle on top of the filling.

Place tart pan in the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, until apples are tender, and filling is set and golden brown. Let cool, remove sides from tart pan, and slice and enjoy!

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I even made a PDF download, if you'd like to print it, just click the link below! 

Download French Apple Tart 


  1. I LOVE THIS RECIPE! I love that it’s gluten-free (which means my kids can partake of it), and I love that you use real butter, coconut sugar (not only is it an unrefined sugar, but it’s also low glycemic – diabetics metabolize this sugar better than other sweeteners), coconut flour and creme fraiche! I’ve been reading/listening to Paul McKenna of I Can Make You Thin, and I love his freeing and liberating views on food (no orthorexia here). His 2nd tenet, after his 1st being “when you’re hunger: EAT,” is “eat what you want, and not what you think you should.” His theory is if you eat what you want, you are more likely to be in touch with when you get full instead of resenting what you’re eating and then eating more to get emotionally satisfied. Thanks, Marne, for sharing this recipe! – Marisa

  2. I’ve been drooling over the photos on Instagram! Yum. Pacific Rose apples were bred here in New Zealand and they’ve become super-popular. I wouldn’t have thought of them as being cooking apples so it’s great to know they are!

  3. Pray tell. What is vanilla paste?

  4. I should have explained! It's this, and it's so good in place of vanilla extract, it's got the actual little vanilla seeds in it but it's a lot cheaper and easier than buying vanilla beans. If you don't want to wait to get the paste, you could just as easily use plain vanilla extract. 

  5. I had no idea when I bought them if they would work, I just thought they were pretty (and they were one of the apples on sale this week) 🙂 I think they were great in this, the sweetness was good with the tangy-ness of the creme fraiche. 

  6. I was looking for this recipe a long time ago until I came into your blog. This is really a big help for me.

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