Monday, 25 January 2016

Lemon Curd Tart

A very simple tart yet loaded with heaps of flavor. The sharp tartness of the lemons is contrast with the creaminess of the whipped topping. The topping, in fact, compliments the sharpness of the lemons. The bright yellowy-ness of the curd really does elevate my mood even in the bleakest of days. This dessert is wonderfully light yet lusciously creamy, flawlessly balanced with the freshness of the lemons – a perfect ending to a sumptuous meal in the summer or the most wonderful accompaniment to a cup of tea in the winter.

This is a cheat’s version of a lemon meringue pie. Tinkering with the original recipe, I have found a way to make it faster and easier. The base would be a simple biscuit base however; there is no cheating or any shortcut to making a good lemon curd. You could, of course, buy jars of lemon curd and use it instead of the fresh one. But do keep in mind; the taste is going to be altered.

I like my tart neither on the “too sweet” or “too sour” side. However, you are absolutely free to adjust the sugar or the lemon juice accordingly.

The tart tin should be 10 inches in diameter.

For the base:
200 grams digestives
100 grams melted butter

Chuck in the digestives in the food processor and whizz it. Add the melted and cooled butter into the mixture. Whizz it again to combine. Once combined, it should look malleable and somehow it does mimic “wet sand”.

Put the mixture into the tart tin and press on to the sides properly. The mixture should be spread and pressed well. Rest it in the fridge for it to set.

For the Lemon Curd:
1 cup castor sugar
150 grams butter (softened)
7 egg yolks
1 whole egg
1 tsp cornflour
1 tsp lemon zest
2/3rd cup lemon juice

Beat the butter, the sugar and salt until combined. Add the egg, the egg yolks and the zest and whisk until creamy. Mix the cornflour with a teaspoon of water and pour it into the egg mixture. Now add the lemon juice. Do not panic if you see the mixture splitting. It is supposed to split, just be patient, it will all come together when it is heated in a pan.

Pour the mixture in a pan and gently heat it. Make sure it’s on the lowest heat, stir continuously. After stirring for about 10 minutes, you will notice that the mixture thickens and it should coat the back of a spoon. By this time, the mixture should look very smooth. There should be no lumps. In case, if you happen to find lumps in the mixture, do not panic. Just sieve the mixture and it should work out fine.

Cover the mixture with cling film and refrigerate for at least 3 hours before using it in the tart.

For the topping:
1 cup whipping cream
2-3 tbsp icing sugar

Whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Refrigerate at least an hour before using.

For the assembly:

Spoon the lemon curd into the tart base and spread it. Completely flatten the top so that it’s easy for the tart to hold the whipped cream in it. Put the whipped cream on it. Let it sit in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.

Lastly, I am a terrible photographer. The image does look a little lopsided but I promise the taste is not compromised..! ;-)

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