← Back to Search Results
baking French
Apple Charlotte, Unmolded (A Hot or Cold Dessert) Recipe-12870

Photo by: Joseph De Leo
Comments: 0


Charlotte aux Pommes

This extremely good dessert is a thick, rum- and apricot-flavored apple purée piled into a cylindrical mold which has been lined with butter-soaked strips of white bread. It is baked in a very hot oven until the bread is golden brown, and is then unmolded. For the sake of drama, the mold should be 3½ to 4 inches high. Be sure to pick the right cooking apples and that your purée is very thick indeed, or the dessert will collapse when unmolded.

Yield: For 6 to 8 people


  • 6 lbs firm nonjuicy cooking apples (Golden Delicious are always reliable)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup dark rum
  • 3 Tb butter
  • 10 to 12 slices of homemade type white bread, 4 inches square and ¼ inch thick
  • 1 cup clarified butter
  • ½ cup apricot preserves, forced through a sieve
  • 3 Tb dark rum
  • 2 Tb granulated sugar
  • Optional: 2 cups crème anglaise (custard sauce) or 2 cups lightly whipped cream flavored with rum and powdered sugar


  • A heavy-bottomed stainless or enameled pan 12 inches across
  • A wooden spoon
  • A 6-cup, fireproof, cylindrical mold about 3½ inches high
  • A pan
  • A serving platter


Quarter, peel, and core the apples. Slice them roughly into 1/8-inch pieces. You should have about 4 quarts. Place in pan, cover, and cook over very low heat for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender.

Uncover and beat in the apricot preserves, sugar, vanilla, rum, and butter. Raise heat and boil, stirring almost continuously until water content has all but evaporated—20 minutes or more. The purée should be a very thick and fairly stiff paste which holds itself in a solid mass in the spoon.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Remove crusts from the bread. Cut a square and 4 semicircles of bread to fit the bottom of the mold exactly. Sauté to a very light golden color in 3 or 4 tablespoons of the clarified butter. Fit them into the bottom of the mold. Cut the rest of the bread into strips 1¼ inches wide. Dip in clarified butter and fit them, overlapping each other, around the inner circumference of the mold. Trim off protruding ends.

Pack the apple purée into the mold, allowing it to form a dome about ¾ inch high in the middle. (It will sink as it cools.) Cover with 4 or 5 butter-dipped bread strips. Pour any remaining clarified butter over the ends of the bread around the edges of the mold.

Set in a pan (to catch butter drippings) and bake in middle level of preheated oven for about 30 minutes. Slip a knife between bread and sides of mold; if bread is golden brown, the charlotte is done. Remove from oven and cool for 15 minutes. Reverse the mold on a serving platter and lift the mold up a few inches to see if the sides of the dessert will hold. If there is any suggestion of collapse, lower the mold over the dessert again; it will firm up as it cools. Test after 5 minutes or so, until the mold can safely be removed.

Boil the apricot, rum, and sugar until thick and sticky. Spread it over the charlotte. Serve the dessert hot, warm, or cold, with the optional sauce or cream.

© 1961, 1983, 2001 Alfred A. Knopf

Nutritional Information

Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

This recipe serves 8, but does not include optional 2 cups crème anglaise (custard sauce) or 2 cups lightly whipped cream flavored with rum and powdered sugar. For nutritional information on crème anglaise, please follow the link above.

655kcal (33%)
143mg (6%)
29g (44%)
18g (88%)
72mg (24%)
243mcg RAE (8%)
17mg (29%)
61mg (6%)
1mg (7%)

Would you like to leave a comment about this recipe?

Notify me of new comments on this recipe. Add comment

We'd love to hear what you think!

Please or to add a comment to this recipe.

Sign up for
The Cookstr Weekly

Free handpicked cookbook recipes delivered straight to your inbox

Explore Cookbooks on Cookstr

fresh-from-the-farmers-market-year-round-recipes-for-the-pick-of-the-crop Fresh from the Farmers' Mar...
by Janet Fletcher
good-to-the-grain Good to the Grain
by Kim Boyce
gluten-free-and-vegan-holidays Gluten-Free and Vegan Holidays
by Jennifer Katzinger
the-vegetable-dishes-i-cant-live-without The Vegetable Dishes I Can'...
by Mollie Katzen, Greg Atkinson
the-sushi-experience The Sushi Experience
by Hiroko Shimbo
west-coast-cooking West Coast Cooking
by Greg Atkinson
the-whole-beast-nose-to-tail-eating The Whole Beast: Nose to Ta...
by Fergus Henderson
desserts-4-today Desserts 4 Today
by Abby Dodge
mexican-everyday Mexican Everyday
by Rick Bayless
urban-italian-simple-recipes-and-true-stories-from-a-life-in-food Urban Italian: Simple Recip...
by Andrew Carmellini
once-upon-a-tart-soups-salads-muffins-and-more-from-new-york-citys-favorite-bakeshop-and-cafe Once Upon a Tart: Soups, Sa...
by Frank Mentesana, Jerome Audureau

Thanks for signing up!

You'll receive an activation email in your inbox shortly. Don't forget to click that link and activate your new Cookstr.com account!

Already a member? Sign in here

Sign up for Cookstr!

  • Receive a free, handpicked selection of recipes in your inbox weekly
  • Save, share and comment on your favorite recipes in My Cookstr
  • Get updates on new cookbooks, Cookstr features, and other exclusives we know you'll love
By signing up you accept the
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
New to Cookstr? Sign up here
Thanks for commenting!
Would you like to share your comment on Facebook or Twitter?