Mulled apple tart

Victoria Glass makes the most of festive spices and the craze for mulling drinks with a delicious apple tart recipe that also makes a big batch of mulled cider. Perfect as an alternative Christmas dessert, this easy apple tart recipe makes entertaining over Christmas a breeze.

First published in 2015

‘Tis the season to mull as much booze as you can reach and, until Twelfth Night at least, the aromas emanating from my kitchen will have a heavy focus on Christmas spices and good old fashioned grog.

Everyone and their aunt has been banging on about mulled cider – apparently spiced hot cider is much more chi chi than spiced hot wine these days. Granted, cider is the more economical choice when fuelling a crowd, but I can’t say I’m wholly convinced mulled wine should be discounted entirely. Why can’t we have both? Preferably one in each hand for easy comparison. In fact, when it comes to mulling, why stop at just drinking?

This year I decided to try my new apple peeler/corer/slicer contraption to make an apple tart. But I didn’t want to make just any apple tart. It’s Christmas after all and I wouldn’t dream of discarding festive tradition by not throwing a tipple and a cinnamon stick at it.

Firstly, I mulled some cider with a generous glug of Calvados (but you can use rum or brandy if you prefer) and poached some apples to make a base purée on which to place slices of apple in concentric circles before drizzling everything in spiced caramel.

You can buy ready-made all butter puff pastry, make your own, or make a gluten-free version using my recipe for GF flaky pastry. This pudding is delicious hot with custard or vanilla ice cream or you can serve it at room temperature as an afternoon pick-me-up.

It also makes a very sophisticated and festive alternative for Christmas pudding haters, plus it leaves you with a pan of mulled cider ready for drinking, so you have plenty to keep you going while you get the mulled wine on for afters.




Mulled cider

Mulled caramel


  • 500g of puff pastry
  • 7 apples, eating apples such as Jazz
  • icing sugar, for dusting


First, make the mulled cider by placing everything, including the squeezed out orange and lemon and the scraped out vanilla pod, into a large saucepan. Stir over a gentle heat until the sugar has dissolved
Peel and core three of the apples and slice them roughly before chucking them into the mulled cider. Once they are soft, remove the apple slices (reserving the cider for drinking) and blitz to a purée in a food processor then set this aside to cool
While it is cooling, make the spiced caramel by placing all the ingredients into another pan then stir over a gentle heat until the sugar has dissolved. Increase the heat and boil until the liquid becomes caramel. Set aside to cool slightly
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Line a large baking tray with baking paper
Roll out the pastry until it is about the thickness of a £1 coin. Place a dinner plate on top and draw the knife around the pastry to cut out a large circle. Transfer to the lined baking sheet and prick the base all over with a fork
Spread the cooled apple purée over the pastry. Core (you can peel if you like, but there’s no particular need) and finely slice the remaining apples and lay them over the purée in overlapping concentric circles
Drizzle over a generous amount of the caramel, saving a couple of tablespoons for later and pop the tart into the hot oven to bake for 20–25 minutes, or until the pastry is golden
Trickle over the remaining caramel and transfer the tart to a serving plate. Dust with a little icing sugar before serving

Victoria is a London-based food writer and recipe developer. She was the Roald Dahl Museum’s first ever Gastronomic Writer in Residence and has written six books, including her latest, Too Good To Waste.

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