My Cherry Tart Tatin is a French-inspired recipe that involves caramelizing fruit in butter and sugar before baking. This recipe is so full of flavor, fluffy, flakey, and has perfect notes of cherry in every bite. Not only does it taste great, but it also looks great as well!
If you want to impress your friends and family with a simple dessert that looks stunning, you need to try this one!
- Difficulty: Easy
- Prep Time: 30-60 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
The trial and error behind this recipe
Creating and tweaking this recipe took me several times to mess around with various ingredients and perfect, but I got a few tricks out of it and luckily the third time’s the charm!
During my first attempt at this recipe I went simple and did not add anything to the cherries other than sugar and cinnamon. Cherries don’t have the strongest flavor once baked but I was thinking this might be enough…it was not. The tart ended up coming out with little flavor other than sugar and butter. This is where my brainstorming started!
On my second attempt, I kept the sugar and cinnamon but added in a pinch of salt and aged sherry vinegar thinking the vinegar would bring out some more flavor from the cherries. This was not the result I was looking for as well. The sherry vinegar ended up making the cherries too bitter so I was back to brainstorming.
The third try was a success! I still wanted to bring out more flavor in the cherries so this time I tried Cherry Liqueur. The Cherry Liqueur was just the trick and gave the cherries an amazing flavor that lasts throughout the baking process! The final result was so delicious and I knew I had finally found the trick to optimize the flavor of this Tart Tatin when it lasted on the plate for about an hour before everyone had eaten it!
Often when creating a new recipe a good amount of trial and error is involved, for me this is the fun part! I get to be creative and try new tricks/ingredients until I get the result I am looking for. Cooking should be fun, if you ever get frustrated with a recipe, keep on trying and you’ll be so happy when you get it right!
Another trick that I have learned throughout the years is that if you’re not making the pastry dough from scratch, generic vs. brand name is very important. Everyone has different tastes, but for me personally I always stick to Pepperidge Farm for pre-made puff pastry. I have tried many different brands and this is the one that always puffs up just right, is flakey in texture and does not become chewy or tough once baked.
- 12 oz frozen sweet dark cherries (roughly 2 ½ cups)
- 1 cup White Sugar
- ¼ Stick Salted Butter
- 2 tbsp Cherry Liqueur
- ½ tsp Cinnamon
- Pinch of Salt
- 1 Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheet, Defrosted
- 10 Inch Cast Iron Skillet
- Medium Mixing Bowl
-Let frozen cherries thaw, cut into halves, and place into a medium mixing bowl.
-Once cherries are fully thawed, add 2 tbsp sugar, cherry liqueur, cinnamon, and pinch of salt to the mixing bowl. Allow the mixture to sit for 20-60 minutes to remove excess liquid.
-Strain excess liquid from cherry mixture.
-Preheat oven to 350℉
-Heat cast iron skillet over medium-low, incorporate remainder of sugar into skillet, slowly adding in butter, allow to melt and caramelize. (constantly stir to avoid burning, sugar should turn golden brown once melted).
-Once the butter/sugar mixture is combined, remove from heat and arrange cherries on top of mixture.
-Cut pastry sheet to the size of skillet and arrange on top of cherries. Poke holes with a fork into puff pastry to allow steam to escape.
Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
*If there is extra liquid once the tart is baked, gently hold down the top of the tart and drain excess liquid from the skillet before flipping onto a plate
-Allow tart to cool for several minutes before the fun part!
-Once the tart is cooled, place a plate on top of the skillet, flip upside down onto the plate.
-Serve with ice cream or whipped cream and enjoy!
-Always let your cherries (or any other fruit, apple for an example) sit for 20-60 minutes with a few tablespoons of sugar mixed in to allow for excess liquid to be removed before baking. This keeps the tart from becoming mushy.
-When dissolving sugar to turn into a caramel consistency, add in butter gradually to help the melting process along, but remember to keep a close watch on it and constantly stir. Sugar is very easy to burn and stirring constantly on medium-low heat keeps the sugar from burning.
-Flip with confidence! Flipping the tart upside down onto a plate can be intimidating but it is nothing to worry about. All you have to do is get a firm grip on the skillet, hold a plate against the top of the skillet, flip quickly and you’re done. After you do it once, you’ll be a pro!
-Unsure of how to get the excess sugar off of your skillet? To avoid scraping and scrubbing at your cast iron skillet, fill the skillet with water, making sure to cover all leftover sugar, and boil for several minutes. The boiling water will dissolve all remaining sugar from your cast iron skillet.