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What’s cooking today: Mango tarte Tatin



What’s cooking today: Mango tarte Tatin

Mango tarte Tatin. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

When your guests include the effervescent, ever-pleasant Emilie Gambade, editor of Maverick Life, it might seem foolhardy to produce a tarte Tatin for dessert. Then Emilie swooned and asked for seconds, and the host sighed happily. This version uses seasonal mangoes rather than the more usual apples or pears.


4 ripe mangoes

150 g butter

150 g castor sugar

1 packet frozen puff pastry, thawed


The pastry needs to be tucked under all round the edges. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

Note how a tarte Tatin has only four ingredients. It’s an easy dish to make but you need to focus on getting the caramelisation good and rich, and be careful when turning it out.

Peel the mangoes carefully, trying not to tear the flesh. Halve each mango and remove the stones. They’re slippery so keep a grip on them. The mango stone is fairly flat, so two cuts right through, at each side of the pip, should do it quite neatly.

Use a sharp knife to cut several incisions just below the narrow end and down, so that each mango cheek is fanned (as you’d fan an avocado). Keep aside.

Use a tarte Tatin dish if you have one or, as I did, an iron frying pan. Put all the butter in the pan first and spread it all over the base to cover it from edge to edge, and then sprinkle over all the castor sugar, evenly. Put it on a low heat and leave it alone while the caramelisation occurs. Watch it, and roll the pan around a bit at intervals to spread the caramelisation around. Don’t let it burn, but do allow a fairly deep brown to spread around.

Place the fanned mango cheeks evenly around the pan, on the caramelised sugar/butter, touching each other. 

Roll out the puff pastry on a floured board and cut a round to fit the pan, but slightly wider than the width of the pan so that you can tuck the pastry under the fruit. Prick the base all over with a fork. Use the handle end of a spoon to tuck the edges of the pastry underneath all round.

Bake in a 200℃ oven for 30 minutes or until the pastry is cooked and firm.

You need a plate or flat serving dish larger than the tarte. Place this over the top of the pan, then turn it in one quick, steady but firm movement so that the tarte turns over without landing on the floor in a fearful splodge and you burst into tears and have to be soothed with sal volatile.

Et voila! DM/TGIFood

Our Thank God It’s Food newsletter is sent to subscribers every Friday at 6pm, and published on the TGIFood platform on Daily Maverick. It’s all about great reads on the themes of food and life. Subscribe here.

Send your recipes to [email protected] with a hi-resolution horizontal (landscape) photo.


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