If you have some poached quince in the freezer, which I had because last year was a bumper crop and I had loads (because John had sent out an appeal in Wingfield and I was invited to empty a whole tree by a delightful gentleman). Defrost the quince and cut into apple sized slices, goodly thick though. Cut a good rosy apply into 8 slices, taking out the core. Put 2oz raw cane sugar – a mixture of soft brown and muscovado – in the bottom of a tartin tin (tin, tin, tin) put it on the hob and let it melt and begin to caramelise. Don’t stir it because it will crystallise. Just be patient and eventually it will melt. Take off the heat. Add 20ml of good quality maple syrup then add a good knob of butter (if you wish). This will turn the base of your tartin into a delicious maple caramel mixture. Be careful it doesn’t spit at you. Don’t stir. Then add your apple and quince. Set to one side and off the heat. Don’t stir!
Take one pack of frozen shortcrust pastry. You might have to wait a bit until it is a bit softer than completely frozen (but it mustn’t be rollable). Alternatively think ahead and get it out of the freezer about an hour before you want to make the tartin. I forgot. I shoved it in the microwave on defrost for a minute. Now comes the magic bit.
Take a good old fashioned cheese grater and grate sufficient pastry to cover the apples and quince and so it is about 2cm thick. Or more, it just means you will need to add a few minutes to the cooking time.
Put the tin in the middle of an oven at 190C for 20 minutes then whack up the heat to 220 for 5 minutes if you are going to eat it today. Don’t whack it up if you are going to freeze it. Whatever your choice, take it out of the oven.
I’m going to freeze mine. I’ll take it out of the freezer on the morning I’m going to use it and then put back in a medium oven – about 160 or so for 20 minutes then 220 for 5 minutes. Leave to rest for 5 minutes then place the serving plate (best have one with a slight lip) over the tin and carefully invert it. Place the plate on a flat surface and lift off the tin. The whole tartin will appear as if by magic and the magic mapley juices will run across the plate.
It’s done. It’s easy. It’s impressive and you neither have to make pastry or roll pastry. You grate it! Great! Hope you enjoy it.