Things like tarte tatin generally require an oven proof skillet but don’t panic if you don’t have one, all is not lost, you can still make a very decent tarte tatin by using a well lined cake tin. This is a gorgeous recipe which makes a very impressive starter for 6 or a jolly decent light lunch for 4, and it freezes like a dream.
1 pack slow roasted sun-blush tomatoes (I used Unearthed from Waitrose)
3 banana shallots, peeled and halved lengthways
75g caster sugar
50g salted butter
40ml Balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp runny honey
A few sprigs of thyme
1/4 tsp sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pack ready rolled puff pastry (this recipe uses approx 200g)
An ovenproof dish and a 23cm loose bottom tin.
Preheat the oven to 160C.
Combine the sugar, Balsamic vinegar, butter, honey and sea salt in a small saucepan and bring to the boil, then simmer & stir continuously for 3-5 minutes, until a slightly thickened caramel liquid is achieved. Season with black pepper. Set aside.
Place the banana shallots in the oven proof dish, pour the caramel liquid over and scatter with the thyme.
Cover tightly with foil and roast for approximately 40 minutes until the vegetables are soft and the caramel has thickened. Carefully turn the shallots half way through the cooking time – if they are fully immersed in the caramel, this can be omitted.
Remove from the oven and cool slightly. Turn the oven up to 180C.
Line the tin with greaseproof paper so the paper comes at least 6cm above the base of the tin to prevent any caramel escaping. TIP: This is most easily done by scrunching a sheet of greaseproof paper and then flattening it out again- it fits into the edges of the tin much more easily.
Arrange the shallots in the tin and then fill in the gaps with the sun drenched tomatoes. Consider the presentation of the finished dish- the entire thing will be inverted onto a plate when it’s cooked so the bottom of the tin at this stage will eventually be the top of the tarte.
Remove the thyme stems and pour the caramel over the vegetables.
Cut a circle of pastry about 1cm larger than the tin and lay over the top of the tomatoes and shallots. Carefully tuck the edges down the side of the tin – a rounded spoon handle is my go-to tool for this.
Bake at 180C for 25 minutes until the pastry is golden brown. If the pastry has risen too much because of steam from the caramel, carefully pierce it with a cocktail stick and press back down gently.
Allow to rest for at least ten minutes, then place a plate over the tin and invert so the tart falls pastry side down onto the plate. Remove the greaseproof paper and serve warm with rocket and crumbled goat’s or feta cheese