Tarte citron (lemon tart)

Yield: 6 To 8

Measure Ingredient
½ pounds Frozen Puff Pastry; thawed
\N \N The Juice of 6 Lemons; (About 1 cup)
6 \N Whole Eggs
5 larges Egg Yolks
1¼ cup Granulated Sugar
1 cup Unsalted Butter; cut into pieces

But you don't have to wait for a reason to celebrate. Today's recipe is the perfect ending to a rich, complex dinner. Once assembled, this tart requires just a minute under the broiler and then an hour to set, so it's very simple to prepare. Try it for dessert tonight and your friends, family, and guests will be impressed with your French pastry skills.

If you prefer to use your own puff pastry recipe instead of a prepared pastry dough, just follow the instructions given below in The Kitchen Staff Tips.

Pre-heat oven to 400-F degrees and assemble your mise-en-place, now.

(Mise-en-place defined: French cooking method whereby you arrange each ingredient in the prepared portions and sequence you'll require when preparing your recipe.)

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry dough to about an ⅛-inch-thick circle that's about 12 inches across. Transfer the pastry to a 9-inch tart pan, preferably with a removable bottom. Gently fit the pastry into the pan and trim off any excess. Prick the bottom of the pastry all over with a fork. Line the pasty with aluminum foil and weight it with dried beans or rice, to keep the pastry from puffing up unevenly during baking. Bake for 15 minutes and remove from the oven when lightly browned.

Remove the foil and weights and cool on a wire rack.

Pre-heat the broiler.

In the top pan of a double-boiler, mix the lemon juice, eggs, egg yolks, and sugar over simmering water in the bottom of a double-boiler pan. Beat the mixture for 8 to 10 minutes with a hand-held electric mixer or whisk.

Make sure the mixture is very thick and the batter clings to the utensil.

Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter pieces a little at a time.

Pour the custard into the puff pastry shell.

Place the lemon tart under the broiler for 60 seconds, or until the top is just glazed. Let it sit at room temperature for about an hour, or until the lemon filling is cooled and set.

Slice to serve. Refrigerate any remaining tart to store, but serve at room temperature.

Kitchen Staff Tips: To prepare a from-scratch puff pastry, chill 1 cup of butter or margarine. Reserve at least 2 tablespoons. Work the remaining chilled butter with the back of a wooden spoon on a sheet of waxed paper that is twice the size of an 9-inch by 12-inch sheet. Make sure to work on one side of the wax paper, then fold the other side on top of the butter, leaving room for the butter to spread as you roll it out to an even 8-inch by 6-inch square. Chill the butter in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or place it in the freezer for 20 minutes.

Cut the reserved 2 tablespoons butter into 1¾ cups sifted all-purpose flour until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Gradually add ½ cup ice water. A fork works great for blending the dough. Cover, and let rest for 10 minutes, then roll the dough on a lightly floured surface into a 15-inch by 9-inch rectangle. Peel off one side of the wax paper from the chilled butter and place on one side of the dough, then fold the dough over the top of the butter and seal the edges. Wrap the butter and dough in wax paper and chill for at least an hour in the refrigerator.

Unwrap the dough and place it on a lightly floured surface. Roll it out to a 15-inch by 9-inch rectangle. Make sure you roll out from the center to keep the batter and dough layers equalized. Brush off any excess flour, then fold the dough in thirds, turn the dough, and fold in thirds again.

Press the edges to seal. Wrap and chill the dough for at least an hour or freeze the dough at this time.

To prepare your pastry, simply roll out the chilled or thawed dough to the size required for baking. You now have 7 layers of butter and dough to form a puff pastry while baking.

Posted to dailyrecipe@... by Recipe-a-Day <recipe-a-day@...> on Oct 7, 1998, converted by MM_Buster v2.0l.

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