You may have noticed by now that most of my posts involve quite a lengthy pre-amble. All I’m going to say about this recipe though is that it is a wonderfully tart tart. Eight lemons is a lot. But I won’t use any other lemon tart recipe. Enjoy!
For a 30cm diameter, 3cm deep flan dish
(For the pastry)
350g plain flour
175 g unsalted butter (cubed)
100g icing sugar
3 egg yolks
This is a delicious pastry. Don’t be scared of it, tackle it head on. The eggs and icing sugar make it extra rich and sweet, which is useful when the tart has such a … tart filling.
(For the filling)
230g caster sugar
8 lemons, zested and juiced (ideally, you’ll end up with 360ml juice)
260 ml double cream
1. Start with the pastry. Mix together the flour and butter with your finger tips, until it looks like breadcrumbs. Next, sift in the icing sugar and egg yolks, and then get your hands involved – the heat they give off helps bring the pastry together. Knead it gently for 20 seconds or so, until it’s in a nice, smooth ball. Refrigerate, ideally for an hour.
2. Roll the pastry, and use it to line mini tart cases or a big flan dish (see below to see how the amounts vary). If the pastry is misbehaving, don’t be disheartened. We’ve all been there. Use your fingers to jigsaw it together in the case if needed - nobody will ever know, and the naughtiest pastry is usually the tastiest.
3. Blind bake at 180°c for 20 minutes. It’s important for the pastry case to have a head start.
4. Thoroughly whisk together the sugar and eggs. Now add the lemon zest, the lemon juice and cream, and continue to beat with enthusiasm until everything is combined. Tip the mixture into a jug, and pour it into the case(s).
5. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 140°c for 35 minutes.
As this is such a deliciously sharp pudding, you can serve it with a generous dollop of sweetened whipped cream, or a hefty dusting of icing sugar. If you really do like your puddings tart and fruity, then serve with some creme fraiche and/or summer fruit compote.
- When you’re mixing the filling, do make sure that you stick to the order of eggs and sugar, and then the rest. I once started with the lemon and sugar, and then the eggs. Everything split and was generally badly-behaved, making the final filling a bit eggy.
- These amounts work in my flan dish, which has a 30cm diameter and is 3cm deep (a long slice pictured below). Rather misleadingly, the photograph depicts some mini versions which I made in another tray which has six, 10cm diameter holes. If you’re making mini versions, then the pastry and filling ratio changes, as there is a bigger surface area, so more pastry than filling required. I used half the pastry amounts above, and quarter the filling amounts for the individual tarts photographed.