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Apricot Tatin - Abricots à la Tatin

What made me bake apricots ? The craving came about a week or two ago when I ate some very delicious ones at my mother-in-law's house (it's now apricot's season). Try as I might, I couldn't get them out of my head. When I read about Domestic Goddess' sugar-high fridays, the idea of cooking them Tatin's style came to me - it's one of the richest kind of fruit pie, right ?

A little historical background

The story of the Tarte Tatin invention is a bit fuzzy, but is known to originate from the Hotel Tatin (run by the two Tatin sisters) in Lamotte-Beuvron, France in 1889. The legend of this upside-down pie claims that it was first made by accident, although reasons for such accident are not very clear. Although the original recipe use apples, variants are now made with other sweet fruits like peaches and pineapples.

Apricot Tatin - Abricot à la Tatin


  • Apricots (cut into halves)
  • 110 g butter
  • 110 g sugar

Shortcrust pastry (pâte brisée)

  • 250 g plain Flour
  • 125 g chilled Butter (cut into cubes)
  • 1 egg
  • 5 g salt
  • a bit of water (approx 5 ml or less)

Pie Crust

Using food processor

  1. Place flour, salt and butter in food processor bowl. Using the pulse action, press button for 30 seconds or until mixture is fine and crumbly.
  2. Add egg and water; process a further 20 seconds until mixture forms a dough.
  3. Wrap the dough in a plastic wrapper and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. Roll out a clean piece of cloth on the table; sprinkle some flour on it.
  5. Flatten the dough slightly with your hands and dust the dough lightly with flour before rolling the dough out with a rolling pin. Start rolling at the centre of the dough and work outwards. Roll the dough into a circle and slightly larger than the size of your pie dish.

Using hands

  1. Put in the flour, salt and diced up butter together in a large bowl.
  2. Using your fingers, rub the butter into the flour until it is crumbly (like sand). To make sure that all butter are rubbed in and there is no big lumps left, scoop some mixture into your hands and rub it in a rubbing motion.
  3. Make a small well in the middle, crack in the egg and pour in the water. Mix the dough mixture with your hands until it forms a ball of dough. The dough should hold together and comes off the bowl easily. Do not work the dough too much.
  4. Wrap the ball of dough with a plastic wrapper and refrigerated it for 30 minutes.
  5. Follow last steps 4 & 5 of above instructions.


  1. Preheat oven at 200°C (400°F - gas mark 6).
  2. Put butter and sugar in a small pan/pot and heat it up till it is caramelized. Remove from heat and pour it into a round baking dish.
  3. Arrange the apricots with the half side facing down on the caramelized liquid, make sure they are fit tightly next to each other.
  4. Bake it in the oven for about 15 minutes.
  5. Take it out of oven and put the crust on top of the apricot and tuck the corners in.
  6. Bake it for approximately another 30 minutes or less. Let the tart cool for a few minutes before turning over on a pie plate. Do not let it cool totally in the baking dish or else it will get stuck to it.
  7. Serve it warm with a scoop of ice-cream or crème fraîche.
Apricot tatin abricots
The Verdict

Without too much surprise, the apricots make the tart a bit acid, but I kinda like it. The taste grows on you - the full apricot flavour in each bite with a mixture of sweet and acid taste at the same time. To me the pie was as good with ice-cream as on its own. Pierre (who has a sweet tooth) feels that it was nice but it was a bit too acid to his taste, and the ice cream brought a welcome balance. We both felt that another 30 g sugar to the caramel would have made this tart even better, and I could bake it again with pâte sablée instead and maybe try some cinnamon on top (or is that the bottom ?;-)).

I have never made this tart before so I had my doubts on how it would turn out. When I took it out of the oven, the apricots had lost a lot of juice and I thought all this water would ruin the crust and create a disaster. Surprisingly when flipped the baked tart over, it turned out beautifully.


Please add another 30 g of sugar to the caramel base. You can also make the caramel with water instead of butter. The pie would look prettier if you put the bottom side of the apricot on the caramel. There are 2 methods for baking it, one in two steps as I mentioned above and the other method is to simply put the pie crust on top of the apricot immediately and bake them at the same time for about 30 minutes at 200°C.

Abricot tatin apricot pieApricot tart tarte abricot
#1, by Jackson Kah (06/25/2007)

Wowow... u r maing me hungry nw!! It's so difficult to get fresh apricots in KL!! lovely dessert!! I wish i stay near you..

#2, by Kelly Mahoney (06/25/2007)

Looks so yummy with the ice cream!

#3, by Lori (06/25/2007)

I could dig right into it! I am recommending your site to my office mates who love to browse the cooking blogs!

#4, by eastmeetswestkitchen (06/25/2007)

The fresh apricots and your tart look so good!

#5, by Patricia Scarpin (06/25/2007)

Your tart looks so beautiful!

#6, by johanna (06/25/2007)

i love tarte tatin... such a quick treat, well, at least when you use puff pastry (store-bought) as i tend to do! i have never tried it with apricots, but will certainly do that soon!

#7, by anh (06/26/2007)

This is wonderful. I love the idea of using apricots here... If only I could taste it not!

#8, by Carol (06/26/2007)

Craving huh? any little ninjas in the picture? HA!HA! I'm like you, when I crave for something I've got to have it or the cravings just won't go away!

#9, by wokandspoon (06/26/2007)

Ooo, that's a nice variation to the usual apple tarte tartins! Very original!

#10, by Gourmet Traveller (06/26/2007)

Great idea! Have you tried it with white peaches? It's really good too.

#11, by lotsofcravings (06/26/2007)

looks like kinda weird actually..but im sure it tastes great!

#12, by MeltiingWok (06/26/2007)

wow, cooking ninja, your apricots looked so fresh and delicious, no photoshop required for touch up hehehe:-) This is a good change besides apples and peaches, good one ger:-)

#13, by The TriniGourmet (06/26/2007)

mmmmmm wonder if i could make these with mangoes :O:-)

#14, by saffron (06/26/2007)

This tart is delicious and makes me feel better even if it's aterrible hot day!

#15, by Nora (06/26/2007)

wow, your used apricots! What a great idea. I've only made such a tart with apples and I loved it. I will try this when apricots (or maybe peaches...) are in season again.

#16, by Little Corner of Mine (06/26/2007)

Like your twist of the Apple Tatin!

#17, by joey (06/27/2007)

Gorgeous looking tart!:-)

#18, by Olivier (06/27/2007)

ah les soeurs tatin, on leur doit une des plus belles creations de la cuisine
L'histoire des soeurs tatins et de la premiere tarte tatin

#19, by The Cooking Ninja (06/27/2007)

@Lori: Thanks

@Carol: hehehe...no little ninja in the oven for now;-)

@Gourmet Traveller: Haven't yet. Will try it out next time.:-)

@Patricia and Johanna: Thanks for dropping by.

@TriniGourmet: hmm...interesting idea. But mango is a lot softer so I wonder if it will become mushy.

@saffron: It has been cloudy and rainy over my end. Can you send some sunny weather over please.:-)

@Nora: I wonder if nectarine be good with this tart.

#20, by The Cooking Ninja (06/27/2007)

@joey: Thanks for dropping by:-)

#21, by Tartelette (06/28/2007)

Nectarine would be awesome! I love making all kinds of Tatins. Yours look wonderful!

#22, by Amy (06/28/2007)

I've made tatin with apples but I never thought of trying it with stone fruits! This is a great idea!

#23, by ming the merciless (06/29/2007)

The fresh apricots look beautiful! Could you believe it, the first time I ever had a fresh apricot was in France when I was in Aix-en-Provence for vacation. I didn't know what it was but loved it. Now, it's one of my favorite fruits.

#24, by keropokman (06/30/2007)

wow. the apricots just look so lovely.
for me, it would not have ended up in the recipe, coz I would have eaten them all when its left on the table.

i sound like a glutton eh? :-P

#25, by Fénix (07/03/2007)

Oh, boy... Am I in trouble! I should visit your blog once a year and for two minutes only. You are dangerous!!!!!

If I showed you a photo of what apricots look like around here you'd cry. They are pitiful pale yellow, odorless, rock-hard things. Sniff. I have been apricot-deprived for 9 years now! Sniff.

#26, by Kevin (07/07/2007)

This looks really good. I am looking forward to apricot season.

#27, by Peter (07/09/2007)

You tart looks fine and tasty. Apricots are still in season, must try & squeeze in this recipe.

#28, by Aude (09/22/2007)

On ne dit pas "Abricot à la tatin" mais "Tatin à l'abricot" !

#29, by kellypea (10/03/2007)

I've always wanted to make a tarte tatin, and I see them made mostly with apples. But apricots are a favorite due to their tart flavor and sweetness. This looks really tasty!