Apple Kuchen: a Tall Apple-Custard Tourte

The name is a mouthful and its identity, questionable. This recipe probably comes from the Alsace region in Eastern France adjacent to Germany. I don’t know whether I should call it a cake or a tart. It bakes more like a tart with its various components. There are the buttery crust, the fruits, crumb layer on the bottom and a custard filling.

The best bite to me was the apples. I got a 2-lb bag of Fuji apples from Trader Joe’s which I have not used before in baking. After baking for over an hour, there was still a bite in the apples. The natural sweetness of the Fuji apples came through nicely. I hardly used up the bag of apples. The recipe calls for three pounds.

The tricky part of this recipe (from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking with Chef Moi) is rolling out the crust. The crust is very delicate to handle. It completely fell apart in my first attempt in flipping it over the springform pan. In the second attempt, I basically pressed the crust dough on the sides. I wonder whether it’s better to use thin plastic wrap, at least on one side, in stead of the more rigid parchment paper, which I used. I would line the bottom of the tart with parchment paper next time for the ease of transfer from the pan onto a plate since the crust is so delicate and fussy. I’d have preferred a more supple and sturdier dough.

The crust turned out quite elegant and tender fresh out of the oven. On the second day, it got soggy.

I skipped the broiler step. No need for more butter and sugar under the broiler. In fact, the kuchen turned golden brown in less than an hour of baking in a 360°F convection oven with the filling.

This is a delicious tart with a long name and a mixed identity. There is plenty to like about it. It is a full package: the fruity flavor, the creamy texture and a distinctive look. You can see more comments from other TWD’s bakers here.


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  • Reply
    September 22, 2015 at 10:11 am

    Beautiful pictures!

  • Reply
    September 22, 2015 at 10:11 am

    Beautiful pictures!

  • Reply
    Mardi Michels
    September 22, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Smart to skip the broiling step (although some caramelized sugar on top would have been nice). Seems a few of us had issues with that (and the pastry – that WAS a pain to roll out!)

  • Reply
    September 22, 2015 at 12:32 pm

    Glad you liked it. I too skipped the broiler step. I thought this torte was OK, but I would have liked more custard vs fruit.

  • Reply
    steph- whisk/spoon
    September 22, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    I wondered why this is in the cake section…most signs point to tart. Regardless, yours looks gorgeous!

  • Reply
    September 23, 2015 at 10:56 pm

    It looks lovely with the higher proportion of custard to fruit (though I did enjoy it with the full amount of apples). I've never baked with fuji apples – I'll have to give them a try.

  • Reply
    September 24, 2015 at 1:19 am

    I tend to end up partially pressing in crusts anyway, so I didn't mind it with this dough – it healed nicely while baking. It sounds like the Fujis were a great choice for this tart. I always like to have a bit of texture left in an apple dish like this. Yours turned out beautifully!

  • Reply
    September 24, 2015 at 3:11 am

    Yours came out beautifully. Yes, the crust was a nightmare but quite tasty. I think your are right about the parchment paper. Maybe if we made the crust moister?

  • Reply
    September 24, 2015 at 11:39 pm

    Wonderful photos and the cake looks so delicious.

  • Reply
    Diane Zwang
    September 25, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    I skipped the butter/sugar step too. I think yours came out perfect. It sounds like we all had issues with the crust.

  • Reply
    September 28, 2015 at 5:30 am

    Beautiful photos! I really like your close ups 🙂
    I have just returned to the group and it was a great recipe to come back to

  • Reply
    September 28, 2015 at 3:01 pm

    The browned bit of apples and raisins make an interesting close ups. I like the texture and, best of all, the great tasting tart.

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