Lemon Tart or Tarte au Citron Recipe

Here's my first attempt at Lemon Tart, or Tarte au Citron. See how I got on...

I'm still battling with pastry, and each time it gets better. I think I'm there with the quantities now to make the best taste. I just nee to improve the blind bake because I don't think I left it long enough this time.

I produced some individual lemon tarts, tarte au citron. I decided to use a recipe by Gordon Ramsey for the filling, which promised a zingy lemon tart. Unsure on the quantities needed for my small tart cases I roughly reduced the recipe to a third of the original. In the end this made seven individual portions with a diameter of 9.5 cm.

Ingredients for the pastry

  • 7oz of plain flour
  • 4.5oz butter
  • one medium egg yolk
  • 3 tablespoons of water

Ingredients for the lemon tart filling

  • Zest of one lemon (needs to be unwaxed)
  • Juice of two lemons
  • 2 eggs
  • 80g caster sugar
  • 70 ml double cream

I haven't tried yet but I'd imagine it should work with full fat milk instead of the cream. Basically you make the pastry as normal, chilling before rolling. Then I blind baked it for around ten minutes. I don't think I did this correctly because the sides baked but the bases didn't. It could be that I didn't bake for long enough, or I should have put holes in the greaseproof paper to release the steam.

The lemon mixture was pretty simple. Zest one lemon into a bowl, juice it and one more into the same bowl. The tar recipe said not to worry about the pips and pulp because it will be passed through a sieve later. Eggs and sugar into a larger bowl and mix thoroughly. Add in the cream and the lemon juice & zest. Once again mixing well. Pass through a sieve and there's the lemon mixture.

Once the pastry bases had cooled and the oven was ready at 150°C I poured in the lemon mixture and baked for around 30-40 minutes. It didn't brown like the image shown on the recipe, but then I didn't really want that. I wanted a smooth top with a deep yellow colour. Once complete I allowed to cool.

The taste was great, a lovely fresh lemon taste. The only downside, as I said earlier, the centre of my bases were slightly under baked. I reckon a couple more minutes would have done it whilst blind baking. Slight miss on this recipe, but I reckon it should be fairly easy next time not to make the same mistake. I also found that some of the lemon tarts had little bubbles on top and I'm unsure why. One thought was that it could be the remainder of steam coming from, the pastry base, which will be looked at next time I do some.

Let me know how you get on if you try, and see if you get the same results.