How to make a four-ingredient pineapple tarte tatin

No homemade Valentine’s Day dinner is complete without an indulgent dessert. 

Of course, you’ve typically got your traditional fondant or chocolate coated strawberries, but a tarte tatin is another great option that’s impressive and, contrary to popular belief, fairly simple to make.

Chef Jack Stein – son of TV’s Rick Stein – has shared his unique take on a traditional tarte tatin, by swapping apples for pineapple.

Sweet tooths will know tarte tatin is made by covering the bottom of an ovenproof frying pan with butter and sugar, before fruit is added along with the pastry crust. 

But what makes this a show-stopping dessert is the fact it goes into the oven upside down – when it comes out it’s then flipped to reveal the beautifully caramelised fruit on top.

See Jack’s full recipe below – which comes from his book World on a Plate – for the ultimate V-Day sweet treat.

Ingredients

  • 250g puff pastry 
  • 75g butter, softened 
  • 175g caster sugar 
  • 1 medium-sized pineapple

Method

1. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface and cut out a 26cm disc, slightly larger than the top of a 20cm tarte tatin dish or reliably non-stick cast-iron frying pan. Transfer to a baking sheet and chill for at least 20 minutes. 

2. Meanwhile, spread the butter over the base of the tarte tatin dish or frying pan, and sprinkle over the sugar in a thick, even layer. 

3. Cut the top and bottom off the pineapple, trim the skin off the side and slice into rounds, each about 5cm thick. 

4. Tightly pack the pineapple slices into the tarte tatin dish or frying pan and place over a medium heat. Cook for 20–25 minutes, gently shaking the pan now and then, until the butter and sugar have mixed with the pineapple juices to produce a rich sauce and the pineapple is just tender. At first the caramel will be pale and there might be some liquid from the juices of the pineapple, but as you keep on cooking, the juices will evaporate and the butter and sugar will become darker and thicker. Just take care that the butter and sugar do not burn. When the pineapple has been caramelised, remove the pan from the heat. 

5. Pre-heat the oven to 170°C Fan (190°C/Gas Mark 5). 

6. Gently place the pastry on top of the pineapple slices and tuck the edges down inside the pan. Prick the pastry five or six times with the tip of a small, sharp knife, transfer to the oven and bake for 25 minutes, until the pastry is puffed up, crisp and golden. 

7. Remove the tart from the oven and leave it to rest for five minutes. Run a knife round the edge of the tart and invert it onto a round, flat serving plate. Serve warm, cut into wedges, with crème fraîche or vanilla ice cream.

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