Monday, May 19, 2014

Lemon Cream Tart

I obviously can't get enough of lemons (witness here and here), and here is yet another lemon-based recipe!  Yes, I have an addiction.  

If you've been to San Francisco and haven't been to Tartine Bakery, you are truly missing out.  Yes, there's always a line.  But those buttery almond croissants and morning buns are truly worth the 15, sometimes 45 minute wait.  They also make a stellar lemon cream tart that's also to-die-for.  Here's my version below that I brought to a girls' night get-together.  This time I used a seriously time-saving frozen crust from Trader Joe's and adorned that lemony goodness with fresh raspberries.

Lemon Cream Tart (from Tartine) makes a single 9" tart


1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
3/4 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 pre-baked tart shell at room temperature


Pour water to a depth of about 2 inches into a saucepan, place over medium heat, and bring to a simmer.

Combine the lemon juice, whole eggs, yolk, sugar, and salt in a stainless steel bowl that will rest securely in the pan above the level of water.  Make sure you keep stirring or else you were cook the eggs into hard little pieces!

Place the bowl over the saucepan and whisk until the mixture becomes very thick and registers 180° F on a thermometer, about 10 to 12 minutes.  It should thicken to the point that your whisk leaves a trail through the curd.  Remove the bowl from over the water and let cool to 140° F, stirring from time to time to release the heat.

While the mixture is cooling, cut butter into 1 tablespoon chunks. When the cream is ready, pour it into a countertop blender (or I used a food processor). With the blender running, add the butter 1 tablespoon at a time, blending after each addition until incorporated before adding the next piece. The cream will be pale yellow and opaque.

Pour the cream into your pre-baked tart shell and cover with plastic wrap.  Cool to room temperature and then place in the refrigerator to chill for several hours.  Once cooled, place fresh raspberries over the entire tart, and dust with powdered sugar immediately before serving.

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