Happy Thanksgiving. Make this tart with whatever apples you like, but if you can find Arkansas Black apples (these were from the store known as “Whole Paycheck”) buy lots of them– they keep in the crisper drawer a long time, and get blacker and sweeter with age.

They are sweet/ tart– great for baking, but also nice and crisp for eating.  Thank you Johnny Appleseed!

Arkansas Black Apples

I sliced mine here on the mandolin– but I have made this tart with thicker slices, and it was still very good.  The crust is a super buttery sweet tart pastry from Mark Bittman in The New York Times.  The recipe made enough for a very simple 10 inch tart, or a folded edge/ rustic 9 inch tart.

roll up the dough onto your rolling pin, then unroll onto the tart pan

Tarts are a great alternative to pies– significantly lower in sugar, but still very rich and satisfying.  At big holiday dinners, these are good to bring for folks who are watching their sugar intake.  Also, much easier to make than a double-crust pie.

after macerating overnight

Apple Tart


  • 1 basic tart crust
  • 2 large apples, peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • dash of nutmeg
  • juice of half an orange


  1. Slice the apples, and very gently toss with sugar.  Allow them to macerate in a strainer over a bowl or saucepan– either at room temperature for about an hour, or overnight in the refrigerator.  Reserve the juices for later.
  2. Roll out your tart dough and place in the tart pan.  If you are making a 10-inch tart like the one shown here, press the dough into the crimped sides using the side of your finger, and press it down so it is level with the top of the eddge of the pan.  If you are making a 8 or 9-inch tart, leave the edges of the dough hanging over the sides while you arrange the apples.
  3. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Arrange the apples– you can do this in several layers, or increase the amount each slice overlaps the preceding slice, so that you have one very tight layer.
  4. Heat the reserved apple/ sugar juices in a sauce pan on medium high heat, add spices and orange juice.  Reduce it by 1/2.  Pour the liquid over the apples, or brush it on.
  5. Bake the tart for 40-45 minutes until golden brown.