• Ingredients: 30
  • Serves: 4
  • Total Time: 2 hr 30 min


  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, chilled
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup Ruby Port
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup orange juice, fresh squeezed
  • 1 (1 by 3-inch) strip orange zest
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled but kept whole
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 4 ounces blue cheese
  • 1/2 cup mascarpone, room temperature
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • Coarse sugar
  • Egg white, lightly beaten


  1. PATE SUCREE: In small bowl, whisk egg yolks and cream until smooth. In bowl of food processor, pulse flour, sugar and salt once or twice to combine. Scatter butter pieces over flour mixture and process until it resembles wet sand. With food processor on, gradually pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Process until just combined, careful not to overmix. Turn dough onto lightly floured work surface and knead a couple of times to bring together. Divide dough in half, press each half into 1-inch disks. Wrap in plastic and chill for 1 hour and up to 8 hours. If dough is too hard to roll out, allow to sit at room temperature for no more than 30 minutes.
  2. BROWN BUTTER CUSTARD: Begin by melting butter over medium heat in large saucepan. Let butter melt completely, then it will start to foam and pop a bit. Adjust the heat so the butter doesn’t burn. Allow the butter to cook until it is a golden color and has a nutty aroma. Remove butter from heat. Beat eggs and sugar together until pale yellow and fluffy. Add flour and salt and beat until just combined. With the mixer running, stream browned butter into the egg mixture very slowly until mixture is smooth. Allow to cool before using in the crostata.
  3. PORT-POACHED APPLE: Bring all ingredients (except apples) to a simmer in large sauce pan. Gently place peeled apples in the liquid, cover, and allow to simmer until the apples are cooked through but hold their shape. If the apples are not completely covered by the liquid, turn them over halfway through cooking. Remove pan from heat and cool completely. Transfer apples and poaching liquid to refrigerator to chill for 2 hours and up to 24 hours, rotating periodically in liquid. Once chilled, remove apples from liquid and carefully cut in half, using a melon baller to remove the seeds from the core.
  4. MASCARPONE-BLUE CHEESE MOUSSE: Whip heavy cream until soft peaks form. In separate bowl, combine blue cheese, mascarpone, honey and pepper and mix until smooth. Gently fold whipped cream into cheese mixture and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. HONEY CARAMEL DRIZZLE: Combine ingredients in small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly. When mixture is smooth and has thickened just slightly, remove from heat and allow to cool. Do not overcook or caramel will be too hard when it cools.
  6. ASSEMBLY: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Flour a rolling pin and roll pastry disks into 7-inch circles on a lightly floured surface. Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheet. Place large spoonful of custard in center of each pastry and place an apple half on top of custard. Gently fold pastry around apple, folding and pressing dough to seal edges, leaving top of apple exposed. Brush the rim of crust with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake the crostata for 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature drizzled with honey caramel drizzle and a dollop of the mascarpone-blue cheese mousse.
Michael Taus

Recipe By

Michael Taus, Chef Advisory Board Member

Acclaimed Chef Michael Taus is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York.  Michael began his career working in the kitchens of Chef Pierre Pollin’s Le Titi de Paris, Chef Joachim Splichal’s Patina, and the kitchens of Chef Charlie Trotter. A Chicagoland area native, Taus has always felt most at home in the kitchen, influenced by his family of great cooks.  It was growing up in this culture that continues to be the driving force behind Taus’s love of the kitchen and the crux of Taus Authentic, named for his father and grandfather.