French Norman Cream Apple Tart

The French just love tarte aux pommes apple tart. Here is an easy old-fashioned apple pie generously garnished with apples with a decadent custard from Normandy.

This tarte normande recipe was taught to me by a great French Chef, Chef Régis, former pastry Chef of Bristol Hôtel now teaching pastry to future chefs. He calls this recipe “grandmother style apple tart”. The apple tart is actually filled with what we call in France a crème normande,/ norman cream made of eggs, sugar, butter and cream. Quite rich I admit but sooooooooo good ! And easy. The normandy region uses a lot of butter and crème fraîche / cream in its recipes, this is why it’s called crème normande.

A very simple recipe with a stunning way or presenting an apple pie for French home cooks as he uses a high pastry mold. Dut don’t worry! As I show you on the photos, this recipe works also with a classic tart tin most homecooks have at home. One recipe, two ways of presenting it.

The mold: pastry circle or tart mold / pie pan

To get a nice pie like in these photos, you must use a 5 cm high and 20 cm in diameter pastry circle placed on a baking sheet or baking sheet covered with parchment paper. The cooking time is quite long due to the thickness of the pie.

However, you may definitely use a classic pie pan / tart mold. Wider and less high, the quantities of the filling are the same. However, the cooking time will be shorter, about 45 minutes instead of 1 hour.

The pastry

I give you the Chef’s Régis recipe. You can replace it with ready-made sweet shortbread dough. The Chef uses 4 eggs for his Norman cream filling. I substituted with 3 whole eggs and 1 egg white to use the leftover from the pastry egg yolk. However, If you use a ready-made pastry then break 4 eggs for the Norman cream. Am I clear?


I use French apples called rubinettes. Choose the apples you are used to for your regular apple tart, if not apples that will support cooking.

Norman cream custard

We call this filling Norman cream as it is made with crème fraîche and butter. You can optionally replace the cream with milk. As for the butter, I choose to reduce the amount to 100 gr where the Chef uses 125 gr. You can flavor the cream with cinnamon and / or vanilla, and of course the French Calvados (or brandy).

generous apple tart with norman cream filling

French Apple Tart with Norman Cream

The French love tarte aux pommes / apple tart. Here is an easy old-fashioned apple pie generously garnished with apples with a decadent custard from Normandy. One recipe and two ways of serving it, gorgeous pie like a pastry chef, or basic homecooking way in a tart tin.
4.37 de 25 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Course Cake or tart, Fruit
Cuisine French
Servings 8


Pastry (or use ready-made sweet pastry)

  • 175 gr flour
  • 90 gr butter cold
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 20 ml milk
  • 20 gr sugar
  • 1 pinch salt

Norman cream

  • 3 eggs + the remaining egg white from pastry, If using a ready-made pastry switch to 4 eggs
  • 125 gr sugar
  • 100 gr cream
  • 100 gr butter melted
  • ½ tea spoon vanilla
  • ½ tea spoon cinnamon
  • optional calvados (French apple alcohol) or Brandy


  • 5 apples
  • 2 table spoon brown sugar or muscovado sugar or coconut sugar


Prepare pastry

  • Mix flour and cubed cold butter until you get a sandy texture.
  • Beat the egg yolk like for an omelet and add it with the milk, sugar and salt. Mix (but only a bit to combine ingredients).
  • Form a ball, flatten it a bit, wrap it in plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Prepare cream

  • First preheat the oven to 170 °C.
  • Whisk eggs and sugar.
  • Add the melted butter and the cream. Mix well.
  • Flavor with aromas of your choice: cinnamon, vanilla, calvados.

Prepare apples

  • Peel and seed the apples. Cut thin slices for a nice dressing.

Roll out pastry

  • Take pastry out of the refrigerator, spread flour on the table and roll out with a rolling pin.
  • Place the pastry ring on a baking tray covered with parchment paper and place the dough inside. You can simply place the dough in a classic tart mold, for the thin version.

Garnish and bake

  • Put a first layer of apples in the bottom of the mold, pour half or the Norman cream, then neatly arrange the rest of the apples. Pour over the rest of the cream.
  • Sprinkle with brown sugar.
  • Bake at 170 °C for 1 hour (45 minutes for a classic tart mold, as it is thinner it less cooking time).


Preparation time shorter if ready-made pastry. Baking time 1 hour if high pastry mold, 45 min if classic tart tin.
Serve with vanilla ice cream or crème fraîche.
Did you make this recipe? I want to see!Tag @zestoffrance on any social media or leave a rating & comment!

Bon appétit !

4 thoughts on “French Norman Cream Apple Tart”

  1. Thank you so much for transmitting this wonderful recipe from Chef Régis, Florence. Amazing! I did the classic tart and used Granny Smith apples which l love as their retain structure and impart some zing. The only change l made was brushing an apricot glaze over the apples at the end. The tart was a real hit and l may experiment with a variety of apples we have here in Canada. Thank you!

4.37 from 25 votes (25 ratings without comment)

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