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La Vie en Rose with Pink Apples and Pink Bubbles: Tarte Tatin + JCB No. 69 Brut Rosé Crémant de Bourgogne #Winophiles

This month the French Winophiles are drawing inspiration from the recipes of Julia Child with Cindy of Grape Experiences leading the discussion. Read her invitation here

If you are reading this early enough, feel free to join our Twitter chat on Saturday, October 16th at 8am Pacific. Follow the hashtag #Winophiles and be sure to add that to anything you tweet so we can see it. Here's the line-up of the French Winophiles' homage to Julia Child.

Julia Child
Portrait of Julia Child by Lynn Gilbert, 1978

I remember watching Julia Child on PBS when I visited my grandparents - my mom's parents - on the weekends; we didn't have a television in our house! I don't really remember the content of the shows...just that my grandmother liked to watch it and Julia clearly had a passion for food. I can still hear her distinctive voice: Bon Appetit!

As French cuisine has always seemed so complicated and fussy, in my mind, I steered clear of it and any Julia Child recipes. Then we watched Julie & Julia in our Food'N'Flix group and I was intrigued by her life. For that event, I made Lobster Killer Rolls. Okay, you just have to watch the movie to get that one.

Tarte Tatin

I made her Boeuf Bourguignon for this event - even paired it with a French wine - and completely forgot about it. So, that will be a bonus pairing to be shared soon. I was swayed by the pink apples I picked up at the market and the pink Crémant de Bourgogne that I had! I made a homemade sourdough puff pastry for the top...or is it the bottom?!

Before I became a permanent resident in Testosterone Land, surrounded and completely outnumbered by my husband and our two boys, I didn't really care for the color pink. Now, I own it. I flaunt it. I embrace it. Besides, they know that if something is pink, it's mine...and it's probably off limits.


La Vie En Rose literally translates to 'life in pink.' However, a better translation might be 'life through rose-colored lenses.' The idea: look at the world that so it's rosy and cheerful. It's about a state of contentment, when everything bring you joy. It's that state maybe of being deeply in love, that Edith Piaf sings about in the song of the same name. Give a listen.

Ingredients makes three tarts
Puff Pastry

  • 200 grams sourdough starter
  • 500 grams flour plus more for rolling
  • 60 grams organic granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs for the dough plus 1 egg for baking
  • 160 grams warm water
  • 2 sticks butter, cold
  • Also needed: rolling pin, waxed paper, baking sheet, silicone brush for the egg wash


  • 2 pounds apples, I used local-to-me Pink Pearls
  • 3 Tablespoons water
  • ½ cup organic granulated sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons butter


Place all of the puff pastry ingredients (but only 2 eggs!) through the warm water in a large mixing bowl. Use a wooden spoon to blend until a shaggy dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a floured workspace and knead until smooth and well-combined, approximately 4 to 5 minutes.

Place the dough in a covered container and refrigerate for at 4 hours or overnight. Once you're ready to make the croissants, remove the dough from the fridge and let stand at room temperature while you prepare the butter.

Flour a piece of wax paper and pound each stick of butter into rectangle on that paper. Some people use a ruler and make it very precise. I am less precise. Wrap the pounded butter and chill.

When you're ready, sprinkle a piece of parchment paper with flour and place dough on top. Roll the dough into a rectangle roughly 12"x 20". Remember, I'm less than precise, but it was around that size.

Remove one rectangle of butter from the fridge and lay it in the middle of the dough. Fold the corners of the dough in to form an envelope. It should look like this...

Using the rolling pin, roll it out to 12" x 20" again. Place the second rectangle of butter on the dough and make another envelope. Then roll it out to the 12" x 20" rectangle, but this time, fold one third of the dough over the other third, like folding a letter. 

Now you have to turn the dough. Turning the dough, by rolling and folding, creates very thin layers of butter and dough. This recipe needs to be turned 4 times. If the butter pushes through a layer of dough, rub it with a little flour. If the butter seems to be melting, chill the dough between each turn. Keep the parchment, the rolling pin, and the surface of the pastry well-floured.

To turn: Rotate the package of dough and butter so that the narrower, open end is facing you, like the pages of a book. Roll the dough out to a rectangle and fold the top third down and the bottom third up, again like a letter. Rotate the dough 90 degrees so that the open end is again facing you. Repeat. Roll the dough out to a rectangle and fold the top third down and the bottom third up. That's 2 turns. Repeat two more times.

Place the dough in the fridge and let rest for 30 minutes. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll out to approximately 1/4" thick. 

Using an 6-inch flat-sided cake pan as a template, cut circles out from the puff pastry. Using a fork, poke holes all over to provide ventilation. Set aside.

I cut the remaining dough into hearts and baked them as a decoration for the tartes.

Peel and halve the apples, using a spoon or melon baller to remove the cores. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, stir together the water and sugar until dissolved. Then cook until light amber in color, approximately 5 to 7 minutes. Add the butter, stirring constantly until the color is a creamy light brown. Add the apples and stir until they are coated in a thick layer of caramel.

Cook for approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Turn the apples constantly so they are evenly coated in the caramel. Remove from the heat when the caramel has reduced and little remains in the bottom of the pan. Take care not to burn the caramel or it will get bitter.

Arrange the apples in the bottom of the cake pan. Press the apples tightly against each other, then pour the remaining caramel over the top.

Lay the circle of puff pastry on top. Tuck the puff pastry down the sides of the pan. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 45 to 50. The pastry should be golden brown and firm. Cool for about 1 hour, then invert onto a plate.

Slice and serve with a sparkling wine.

JCB No. 69 Brut Rosé Crémant de Bourgogne

Eponymous Jean-Charles Boisset, the visionary behind JCB, was born in the village of Vougeot, Burgundy, France. Each of the JCB wines is labeled with a distinct number and a story. Number 69 is a seductively crisp and bright Rosé. On the nose, there are aromas of red fruits such as raspberry and red currants. On the palate, the wine has soft, persistent bubbles. This was a nice match with the buttery, sweet Julia Child-inspired dessert.

Stay tuned for my Boeuf Bourguignon post coming soon. And the #Winophiles will be back next month with affordable Bordeaux wines with Linda of My Full Wine Glass hosting. Can't wait!


  1. Your tarts turned out love and I'm anxious to see you beef bourguignon.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Pink Pearl apples? How do they taste? I love the pairing, the yeasty dough and maybe tart apples with the sparkling wine!

  4. I love your description of owning the color pink and how it also helps mark your territory! LOL I'm also super intrigued by sourdough puff pastry (going to have try it) and those apples are just beautiful.

  5. Oh heavens, girl, this sounds amazing from beginning to end. I have to find those apples, though. yum.


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