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Before starting our Signature Apple Cake recipe, make sure you have organised all the necessary ingredients.
Prepare the shortcrust pastry.
Roll out the pastry...
... and line in a deep tart ring. Using a rolling pin on the edges of the tart ring, remove the pastry excess.
Place a sheet of greaseproof paper and pour baking beans on the surface of the pastry, as we don't it to rise during cooking.
Bake blind at 180-200°C (gas 4-6).
When the pastry shell is baked, remove the baking beans and greaseproof paper. Return to oven for a few minutes. Set aside to cool.
Place the gelatine sheets in cold water.
#For the crème pâtissière: Split the vanilla pod lengthwise. Add to the milk and bring to a boil.
Pour the sugar over the egg yolks.
Blanch the mixture using a whisk.
Add the flour...
... and combine.
Add the boiling milk, while stirring with the whisk.
Transfer the preparation into the saucepan used to boil the milk and cook the crème for 4 or 5 minutes until thickened.
Strain the gelatine sheets extracting as much water as possible. Add to the crème and combine to dissolve.
Set the crème aside to cool, making sure it does not jellify. Flavour with Calvados.
For the apple filling: Select nice, big apples. Peel them...
... and cut into regular slices.
Melt some butter in a non-stick frying pan. When the butter is hot and starts sizzling...
... add the apples.
Add the amount of sugar according to your taste. You can also add a vanilla pod split in two or a cinnamon stick.
Sauté the apple quarters until brown. The preparation should look like a kind of compote with chunks.
Flambé the apples with Calvados. For this operation, the alcohol should be hot...
... before ignition.
Set the apples aside to cool. Fill the blind-baked pastry shell with the apples.
Press with the back of a spoon to make the apple mixture compact.
Remove the tart ring and replace with a deeper vacherin ring (same diameter).
For the Italian eringue: Cook the sugar with a small amount of water until it reaches 121°C. I recommend using a digital thermometer.
In the meantime, start beating the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
When the sugar reaches 121°C, pour over the beaten egg whites and continue whisking with an electric whisk (low speed).
Once the sugar is fully incorporated, increase to maximum speed and beat until cooled down completely.
Using a whisk, combine 1/3 of the meringue with the crème. The crème should be cold and not jellified.
Mix until the consistency is smooth and homogeneous.
Add the remaining meringue.
Combine gently with a wooden spatula, making rotating movements, to obtain a more homogeneous consistency. Do not work the preparation too much, as the meringue could collapse.
Spread the crème on top of the apples.
Even the surface with a stainless steel spatula, following the edges of the ring.
Cover with cling film and reserve in the fridge for several hours.
A few hours later, remove the cling film.
Sprinkle the surface with cassonnade sugar or vergeoise sugar. Spread the sugar on the surface to create a thin, even layer.
Caramelize the surface with a blow torch. Refrigerate before serving.
Remove the cake ring. You may need to slide the blade of a knife between the cake and the ring to make this operation easier.
This delicious dessert should be served cold and can be complemented with a crème anglaise or a raspberry coulis.
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