Tarte au Citron
What’s your favourite French dessert? I reckon a Tarte au Citron would have to be the favourite of many of us. These zesty little yellow cakes are popular in France with many patisseries selling loads of individual sized Tarte au Citrons daily.
Buying and cooking with seasonal fruit is the healthiest and most economical way of providing a varied diet for yourself and family. Have you got plenty of lemons or limes at the moment? Why not try the Tarte de Citron by Maria Villegas and Sarah Randell from the food of france cookbook (Murdoch Books).
The recipes in this book never disappoint as they are easy to follow and my finished result always looks just as beautiful as the photographed versions in the book. So honestly, they are fool proof!
You will need a quantity of sweet pastry (see below if you need instructions) and the following:
2 egg yolks
285 g caster sugar (superfine)
185ml thick cream (double/heavy)
250ml lemon juice
finely grated zest of 3 lemons
AND TO THE MAKING…
Preheat oven to 190°C (375°F/Gas5). Roll the pastry to line a 23cm round loose-based fluted tart tin. Chill pastry for 20 minutes.
For the filling, whisk eggs, egg yolks and sugar together. Add the cream, whisking all the time, and then add the lemon juice and zest.
Blind bake the pastry for 10 minutes with greaseproof paper and baking beads then for a further 3-5 minutes without. Pastry should be just cooked but still very pale. Remove from oven.
Reduce oven to 10°C (300°F/Gas2).
Put the tin on a baking tray and pour filling into the pastry case. Return to the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until set. Leave to cool and dust with icing sugar before serving.
When in Brisbane I always head to Le Bon Choix Patisserie for one of their zesty citron tarts. This cafe describes itself as specialising in French-renaissance-style sweets and savouries, while maintaining the classical antiquity and integrity of the product. With a commitment to quality ingredients, the translated meaning of “The Good Choice” is truely reflected.
SWEET PASTRY INGREDIENTS
340g plain flour
small pinch of salt
150g unsalted butter
90g icing sugar
2 eggs, beaten
AND TO THE MAKING OF THE PASTRY…
Sift the flour and salt onto your work surface and make a well in the centre. Put butter into well and work, using a pecking action with your fingertips and thumb, until it is very soft. Add sugar to the butter and mix together. Add eggs to the butter and mix together.
Gradually add the flour, flicking it into the mixture and then chopping through until you have a rough dough. Bring it together in your hands and knead a few times to make it smooth. Roll into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and put in fridge for at least an hour.
Let me know if you found the recipe a success or, maybe, what your favourite French dessert is…
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