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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Banana Maple Tart Tatin

The first is actually a dessert, since that's generally what I'm drawn to in terms of recipe searches, but it's so simple, fast, and tasty I had to include it. And, it's almost sugarless (except the sugar in the puff pastry and the natural sugar in the maple syrup). If you don't have a vanilla bean, you could probably add 1/2 to 1 tsp real vanilla (no imitation stuff here) instead. Enjoy!

Banana Maple Tart Tatin

1 sheet (about 7 ounces) frozen puff pastry
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 vanilla bean, split
2 to 3 bananas, thickly sliced (1/2 to 3/4 inch)

On a floured surface, roll the pastry out a bit to even out the any folds and make it a touch thinner. Cut a 10-inch circle of dough from it, prick it, and keep it chilled.

Preheat oven to 425F.

Place a heavy 9 or 10-inch metal cake pan (I used a cast iron skillet) on the stove on a large burner and turn the heat onto medium. Add the butter and warm to melt it. Meanwhile, scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean. Add the maple syrup and vanilla bean & seeds and bring to a boil stirring a bit. Remove the vanilla bean. Take the pan off the heat and place the banana slices in the pan decoratively in concentric circles to cover the whole bottom of the pan. Place the pastry over the bananas to cover them, tucking the pastry down along the inside of the pan. Later, during baking, the pastry will shrink to fit the pan.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the pastry is golden brown. Let cool in the pan 30 minutes then warm the bottom of the pan on the stove for a minute and turn the tart out onto a serving platter.

Recipe courtesy Gale Gand

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