Graham Elliot ushers in fall with his take on a simple apple tart

Graham Elliot

The celebrity chef and restaurateur took to the web with an interactive baking class designed to showcase the season’s finest flavors. The result is a delicately delicious pastry that’s almost as much fun to make as it is to eat.

Acclaimed chef, restaurateur, and cookbook author Graham Elliot welcomed autumn with a virtual class in making apple tarts. Livestreaming on Mastercard’s Twitter channel from his home kitchen, Elliot was joined by his two young “sous-chefs” (sons Conrad and Jedediah), who helped prepare the pastries while occasionally sneaking bites for themselves.


As Elliot explained, fall brings with it a bounty of flavorful ingredients, many good enough to stand largely on their own in recipes. 


“The idea is taking things that are in season and finding a way to make them delicious by doing as little as possible to them,” Elliot said. “This is a simple apple tart that’s going to incorporate fall spices.”


As he led viewers through the process of mixing and rolling the crust and slicing the apples, Elliot noted that tarts are perfect for showcasing whatever ingredients are currently in season.


“What’s fun with a tart is that you can use it as a vehicle to make whatever you want,” he said. “In summer you have stone fruit, peaches, and plums, and if you want savory you can make a tomato tart. Right now, you’ve got pumpkins, pears, apples, and things like that.”


With the excellent quality of the Granny Smith and Lady apples Elliot was using, he felt they needed little in the way of preparation, though home cooks are free to get creative. 


“I like the less-is-more philosophy, but there’s no right or wrong with cooking,” he said. “It’s whatever you feel at that moment, and if you follow that idea you’ll really be liberated in the kitchen.” 



As the trio got their tarts ready for the oven, Elliot shared a few tips to achieve the best results. When prepping the dough, for example, leave the butter in the refrigerator, then dice it into small cubes just before adding it to the mix. Use an egg wash on the crust to give it color and help it bake evenly. And always adjust the size of your ingredients to the amount of time they’ll be cooking.


“Remember, if you are going to cook something low and slow, the bigger pieces the better, and vice versa if you’re cooking something quick—you need them nice and thin,” he said.


Don’t skimp on the cinnamon with these tarts, though. Elliot grates fresh cinnamon over them both before and after baking, to give just the right kick. And finally, right before serving, he gives them the finishing touch: a salted caramel pecan drizzle, scoop of vanilla ice cream, and dollop of whipped cream. 


Download recipe: Graham Elliot Apple Tart Recipe Card


Before enjoying his own tarts with his family, Elliot reminded viewers to visit to see all the virtual experiences available – to Mastercard cardholders.


“There’s an exclusive virtual experience that you can do with me, with all proceeds going to support World Central Kitchen,” he said. US Mastercard cardholders have the opportunity to purchase a one-to-one digital cooking consultation with Chef Graham Elliot, where he will give expert cooking advice in your own kitchen. The cardholder will also receive an apron and autographed cookbook.


Mastercard proudly partners with leading nonprofits, such as World Central Kitchen, that support severely impacted small businesses and communities. To learn how you can support charities like World Central you can click here, or cut and paste the following link into your web browser World Central Kitchen is a US  501(c)(3).