dimanche, novembre 08, 2009

Tarte au Citron

Tarte au Citron (Lemon Tart)

To continue with my Nice reverie, I made another Niçoise speciality Tarte au Citron or Lemon Tart. I've 2 bags of organic and sicilian non-treated lemons from Esselunga and needed to use them up somehow. Hub's into making cocktails with the lemons recently, but there are so many cocktails one can drink.

This tart is really easy to make but you'll need to watch your oven. I didn't. Roasted a chicken at 220°C in it before and didn't wait for the heat to come down sufficiently before putting in my lemon tart and it burnt (but only on the top) almost immediately. I covered it with aluminium foil at this point to continue with the baking, but aesthetically, it's pockmarked. Still, I do not advocate loving only the superficial, the tart is as good as any other that I've not burnt and I will show it to you as it was. Next time I'll put a tray on top to shade it from the top grill.

Tarte au citron :

The pastry base :

200g Flour
100g Butter (softened)
2-3 Tbsp Sugar
Pinch of salt

The lemon curd filling :

3 Eggs
150g Sugar
3 non-treated Lemons
20g Maizena (Corn starch)
30g Butter (melted and cooled)

Using the tips of the fingers mix the flour with the softened butter. Make a well, add in 4-5 Tbsps of water, the sugar and the salt. Mix and knead quickly to form a ball, adding more flour and/or water if necessary. Envelop the dough in clingwrap and keep in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Sweetcrust pastry base

Prepare the lemon curd by whisking the eggs with the sugar till the batter is white and creamy. Add the melted butter, the juice from the lemons, zest from 1 lemon, the cornstarch that has been dissolved in 1 Tbsp of water. Mix well.

Lemon curd filling

Flour a surface and roll out the dough. Butter a round mould generously and fill it with the dough. Pour the lemon curd onto it. Bake for 30-40 minutes in an oven preheated at 180°C. Let it cool before serving. Can be eaten on its own, or with a meringue, vanilla ice cream or chocolate sauce.

A slice

I also like making the Lime version of the tart, and would usually use sweetened condensed milk so as to remain faithful to the Key (Florida) origins of the pie.

Hub has been playing quite a bit of Mario Brothers on the kids' Nintendo DS. He's at it before he goes to bed (instead of making love to his wife as he normally does) and again at it the minute he wakes up (instead of making love to his wife as he usually does). I am not angry or frustrated, on the contrary I find it amusing that he should tell the kids off for spending too much time on the machines, then confiscate and play them himself. This leaves me time to start on a book much suited to the cold, grey and humid weather of the moment : "Observing the English : The hidden rules of English behaviour," by Kate Fox, a respected English anthropologist.

2 commentaires:

Anonyme a dit…

Most recipes on lemon tarts uses lots of eggs but yours uses a reasonable number. Am thinking of cholesterol from the eggs. So I think I might give it a shot but since I don't quite like lemons in tarts, I might use mandarin oranges or clementines as & when I do find them sold here in Spore.

Beau Lotus a dit…

Actually me too I don't like lemon in tarts nor in ice cream, give me clementines or oranges any time.

I may just do it since I have clementines going to rot soon. Thanks for the reminder.

Meanwhile, I don't think we need too many eggs since lemons contain natural pectin and will bind the filling together quite nicely. After that it depends on what you want, there are lemon tarts with a very dense egg tart-like filling and that you'll need more eggs to achieve. Mine was like a mousse before being baked and it settled down quite nicely 30-40 mins later and was reasonably firm.