apple custard tart'wichapple custard tart'wich

The wintery months are all about potatoes, cabbages and apples. I'm always amazed (having spent half of my life in North America and the other half here in Europe) how people here in France are acutely aware of the different varieties of fruits and vegetables and herbs and of "what's in season" and acquire their fruits and vegetables only (and only) when it's the right season ! Good for them… Back to our apples, I use them as a fruit topping (or bottom), in pies, cakes, sauces, soups, baked in the oven, fried and battered, just as a fresh snack (even though I'm slightly allergic to uncooked apples, nothing serious, just a brief slightly itchy-scratchy sensation in my throat and ears). Apple pies with or without custard are a staple dessert. Let's make a deconstructed apple custard tart, 3 layers of nutty cookie crust, one layer of a cooked custard disc and layer of baked apple slice… Ready, set, go ! By the way, i'll be making a quick video soon for tips and pointers AND (believe it or not) you’ll be needing 2 silicone moulds with 8 cavities each in the shape of straight-sided cylinders (6cm in diameter and 4cm high)… AND if you don't, just double or triple the recipe and make a nice big apple custard pie !

apple custard tart'wich


8 (approx 6x6x6 cm each)


part 1 : sweet nutty cookie crust

  • 10 tbsp all-purpose flour (175 grams)
  • 10 tbsp hazelnut powder (60 grams)
  • 5 tbsp icing sugar (40 grams)
  • 4 tbsp melted butter (75 grams)
  • 1 whole egg (beaten, 50 grams)
  • 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp of ground cloves and grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 pinch of salt

part 2 : custard

  • 2 1/2 tbsp all-purpose flour (20 grams)
  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar (35 grams)
  • 1 egg (50 grams)
  • 125 ml half-half cream (15%) or a mix of regular milk and 30% cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (5 grams)
  • 1 tsp dark rhum (5 grams)
  • 1 pinch of salt

part 3 : apple slices

  • 2 large green apples, peeled, cored, sliced into disks (6 cm in diameter and 10-15 mm high… i know, crazy-talk… (grate the rest for an apple sauce or just eat it)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice (15 grams)
  • 2 tbsp butter (30 grams)
  • 2-3 tbsp sugar (25-40 grams)

part 4 : garnish

  • 8 toasted hazelnuts
  • icing sugar
  • thinly-sliced apple peel


sweet nulty cookie crust

  • either by hand or in a stand mixer with a paddle and dough hook, mix all ingredients together
  • refrigerate the batter for one hour until it firms up
  • remove from refrigerator and form into 24 little dough balls and refrigerate again (I weigh each one to be 16-17 grams each)
  • heat your oven to 180°C (355°F) with the rack in the middle
  • brush the Inside of your silicone moulds with melted butter
  • place one ball of dough inside each cavity and press down and flatten completely with a round flat and greased object (i use the flat side of an espresso spoon/doser)
  • place each silicone mould onto a rigid baking sheet and bake each for 15 minutes, rotate once and keep checking every 5 minutes, they should remain soft)
  • let cool and flip out the 24 flat cookies


  • in a bowl, whisk the sugar and flour and salt together and mix in the egg until it becomes a smooth paste
  • in a small saucepan, heat up the milk and cream until it starts to boil and gradually whisk it into the flour and sugar and egg mixture and keep stirring
  • add in the vanilla extract and rhum (optional)
  • let it cool
  • when ready, use one silicone mould with 8 cavities and pour the liquid mixture into each cavity about 10-15mm High
  • lower the heat to 165°C (330°F), place the mould on a rigid baking sheet and in the oven on the middle-rack
  • bake for 10-15 minutes until firmed up, keep rotating the sheet every 5 minutes and keep checking the firmness (it will also firm up more when cooling or inside the refrigerator)
  • remove and let cool completely and flip them out carefully


  • peel and core your apples, cut in half if very high (save some thinly sliced peel soaked in lemon juice for garnish)
  • using a 6cm round cookie-cutter or baking ring, cut out one large cylindrical section
  • slice into individual disks or rings (about 6cm in diameter and 15mm high)
  • brush them with lemon juice (to avoid browning)
  • then brush them with melted butter and sprinkle sugar on all sides
  • place each apple disk in each cavity of your silicone mould and place the mould on a rigid baking sheet
  • bake in the oven at 180°C (355°F) for 10-15 minutes and keep checking and rotating the baking sheet every 5 minutes, you want to cook them but you want a relatively firm apple disk
  • remove from oven, let cool and remove each apple disk carefully

final assembly

each step can be carried out separately and each layer refrigerated

  • when ready, gather all separate elements on your work surface and lay out the first 8 cookies
  • place one custard disk on each cookie
  • place the second cookie on top of the custard disk
  • place an apple slice on the second cookie
  • top with the last cookie
  • press down gently (if it seems to slide use some warmed-up apple sauce as a glue in between the layers)
  • top with icing sugar and then a hazelnut and some thinly-sliced green apple peel that has soaked in lemon juice (dab the peel dry)
  • refrigerate and serve