This is a classic dessert and comes from one of my favourite cookbooks, "The Food of France". I have made this lemon tart many times and it always goes down well with a crowd! I love citrus puddings and bakes, and tarte au citron is one of my absolute favourites. The sweet pastry used in this recipe is also lovely to work with and can be used in all sorts of sweet tarts.
If you love lemony goodies then please also check out my lemon squares, sticky lemon poppy seed muffins and lemon curd swirl ice cream.
Cook's notes: this recipe makes enough filling for a fairly deep tart, and if like me you have a rather shallow tin then you will probably have some pastry and filling left over. I used the extra bits to make miniature tarts in a mini muffin pan. You can also bake the extra filling in small greased ramekins to make individual lemon pots.
For the sweet pastry:
small pinch of salt
150g unsalted butter
100g icing sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
For the lemon filling:
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
275g castor sugar
190ml double cream
275ml fresh lemon juice
finely grated zest of 3 lemons
Icing sugar for dusting (optional)
Step 1.) To make the pastry: Sift the flour and salt onto your clean work surface and make a well in the middle. Put the butter in the centre and work into the flour using your fingertips, until soft. Mix the icing sugar into the butter.
Step 2.) Add the eggs to the butter and mix in. Then slowly start cutting the flour into the butter mixture. Bring the mixture together with your hands, then knead a few times until you have a smooth dough. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
Step 3.) Grease a 23 cm tart tin / pie dish. Roll the dough into a circle and line the tin. Preheat your oven to 190°C. Chill the pastry shell in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Step 4.) Line the pastry with a piece of crumpled baking paper. Fill the paper with dried beans and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the beans and paper and bake the pastry for a further 5 minutes or until just cooked.
Step 5.) Reduce the oven temperature to 150°C. Whisk the eggs, egg yolks and sugar together. Add the double cream while whisking, then add the lemon juice and zest.
Step 6.) Pop the tart tin on a baking tray and pour in the lemon filling. Carefully transfer the tray to the oven. Bake the tart for 35 minutes or until the filling has set. Allow to cool completely and dust with icing sugar before serving.