Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Father's Day Lemon Tart with Raspberry Cream

Lemon tart is one of my Dad's favourite puddings. I made one recently as part of the Terre a Terre experiment but it was a bit of a chore, so I chose to try a different base recipe to see whether the results could be as good using a simpler method.

I based this tart on a recipe in "The Masterchef Cookbook" by David Henry, p373. As usual, I played about with the recipe to suit myself, plus I served it with raspberry cream (instead of his cucumber sorbet) because I saw James Martin make some on Saturday Kitchen this week and thought it would go well - it did.

The results were fabulous, the pastry was a bit like a shortbread biscuit and the tart, lemony filling was gorgeous. The raspberry cream was perfect with it.

So, method. First the pastry: 85g of butter, 50g of icing sugar, 2 egg yolks and 175g plain flour. Rub the butter into the icing sugar, add the yolks and mix in, then the flour. Wrap with clingfilm and pop into the fridge for half an hour or until you're ready for it.

I made the filling while the pastry was chilling. Warm up 75g of caster sugar with the juice of 2-3 lemons (depending on how lemony and tart you want it), until the sugar has dissolved. 

Slowly add 100ml of double cream, whisking constantly, then 3 beaten eggs - keep whisking! You're waiting for it to thicken, it took a while but when it worked it was obvious, so keep cooking on a low heat and whisking away until it's quite thick, but still pourable. 

It was fine left to go cold until I was ready to make the tart itself; I suspect that the pastry and filling could be made quite happily the day before.

Don't bother rolling out the pastry, just slice it thinly and press the slices together with your fingers in a greased baking tray or dish. It might not be perfectly flat throughout the tart but it's much much easier to do and cooks just fine. I used one of those tins with a removeable bottom.

Prick it all over with a fork and pop in the oven for 15 minutes at 200 degrees. Turn the oven down to 140 degrees, fill the pastry shell with the lemon mixture and bake for a further 25 minutes. Leave to cool and then refrigerate for an hour or even overnight.

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