RECIPE: Lemon Tart - Delicious

cookingrvcJuly 10, 2004

This tart accompanied the apple almond tart that I brought to the office Wednesday. I used a store-bought deep dish pie crust that I transferred to the tart pan - then prebaked til golden.

I didn't do a very good job of transferring it because it developed holes in the pre-baking process. Had to add a few sheets of phyllo dough to cover up the holes so the lemon mixture wouldn't fall through the tart pan's bottom. Turned out beautiful.

I decorated it with some fresh raspberries, mint sprigs, and confectioner's sugar; it looked like it came from a bakery. The taste is wonderfully tart and fresh. This is made especially easy by using pre-made crust.

NOTE: If you're making one large tart, figure on double the baking time.

Lemon Tarts

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method

-------- ------------ --------------------------------

The Crust

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cup confectioners sugar -- plus extra to decorate finished bars

1/4 cup cornstarch

3/4 teaspoon salt

12 tablespoons unsalted butter (11/2 sticks) -- at very cool room temperature, cut into 1-inch pieces, plus extra for greasing pan

OR: Use a thawed store-bought deep dish pie crust, roll it and transfer to a large tart pan. Pre-bake for 15 minutes at 350°.

Lemon Filling

4 Large Eggs -- beaten

1 1/3 cups Granulated sugar

3 Tablespoons All-purpose flour

2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest

2/3 Cup juice from 3-4 lemons

1/3 Cup whole milk

1/8 teaspoon salt

Rasberries and mint for garnish

For the crust: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter individual-serving tart molds (with removable bottomes) or larg tart mold. Light;y grease bottom with oil or butter.

Pulse flour, confectioners sugar, cornstarch, and salt in food processor workbowl fitted with steel blade. Add butter and process to blend, 8 to 10 seconds, then pulse until mixture is pale yellow and resembles coarse meal, about three 1-second bursts.

To do this by hand, mix flour, confectioners sugar, cornstarch, and salt in medium bowl. Freeze butter and grate it on large holes of box grater into flour mixture. Toss butter pieces to coat. Rub pieces between your fingers for a minute, until flour turns pale yellow and coarse.

Sprinkle mixture into pan and, press firmly with fingers into even, 1/4-inch layer over bottom and up the sides. Refrigerate for 30 minutes (skip this if using store-bought pie shell), then bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

For the filling:

Whisk eggs, sugar, and flour in medium bowl, then stir in lemon juice, milk, and salt to blend well.

To finish the tarts: Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Stir filling mixture to reblend; pour into warm tart crust. Bake until filling feels firm when touched lightly, about 20 minutes. Transfer tarts to wire rack; cool to near room temperature, at least 30 minutes.

Adapted slightly from: "Cook's Illustrated May, 1998"

NOTES : After cooled, refrigerate until serving.

These can be made as bars (use parchment paper) but come out very nicely as indicvidual-serving tarts. Can also be made as a large tart.

When ready to serve, garnish with raspberries, fresh mint leaves, and a sprinkle of confectioners sugar.

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Not much better than lemon tarts & I especially like lemon desserts after a rich meal.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2004 at 4:48PM
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Sue, I could almost look forward to going back to work if I could work in your office! You spoil those people rotten:)

    Bookmark   July 19, 2004 at 3:37PM
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It's great for getting special favors, especially from the young fellas in the IT sector!


    Bookmark   July 19, 2004 at 9:25PM
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I see that there's a method to your madness!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2004 at 11:03PM
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