Monday, February 8, 2010

Lemon-Vanilla Tart

Bob, a coworker of mine, has a lemon tree in his yard and raved about the huge, fresh lemons it was producing. I had just seen the recipe for this tart in a magazine, and when he brought some lemons in to work and offered them up, I quickly took a few. Another friend had given me some homemade vanilla in December (thanks, Lisa!), and I loved the fact that I was using ingredients from so many others to make this dessert.

As I was making the tart, I remembered all of the lemon recipes Meg and I made during Lemon Week.

I admit that when it came time to make this, I was tired and overwhelmed at the thought of making the tart pastry from scratch. I also don't have a tart pan. Conveniently, I had a frozen pie crust in the freezer and figured I could use it for a slightly less homemade product. I baked the pie crust as directed and it turned out great. I sampled a small piece before handing it over to Bob the Lemon Man, and I loved the tart-but-not-too-tart lemon flavor that was shining through the hint of vanilla flavor. This wasn't a pure lemon tart, and I liked that - the vanilla really gave it a richer tone.

I didn't eat or really care for the idea of the candied lemon slices, but they *did* look pretty and were super easy to make.


1 recipe Tart Pastry (recipe below)
2 lemons
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 eggs
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 Tbsp. vanilla
1 recipe Oven-Candied Lemon Slices (recipe below)


1. Prepare Tart Pastry. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Wrap the rolled-out pastry around a rolling pin. Using pin, ease pastry into a 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom, taking care not to stretch the pastry. Press pastry into fluted sides of tart pan. Trim edges even with the pan. Line pastry with a double thickness of foil. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove foil. Bake 5 to 6 minutes more or until crust is golden. Cool on wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

2. Meanwhile, finely shred 4 teaspoons peel from lemons. Set aside. Squeeze enough juice from lemons to measure 6 tablespoons; set aside.

3. In medium bowl combine sugar and flour. Add eggs. Beat with electric mixer on medium to high speed for 3 minutes or until mixture is light in color and slightly thickened. Stir in lemon peel, lemon juice, butter, and vanilla. Pour into pastry shell. Place tart pan on a baking sheet.

4. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until filling is set and lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.

5. To serve, remove sides of pan, and top tart with Oven-Candied Lemon Slices. Makes 8 servings.

Tart Pastry
In medium bowl cut 1/2 cup cold butter into 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour until pieces are the size of small peas. In a small mixing bowl combine 1 beaten egg yolk, and 1 tablespoon ice water. Gradually stir the egg yolk mixture into the flour mixture. Add 2 to 4 tablespoons more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until all the dough is moistened. Shape into a ball. If necessary, cover dough with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for 30 to 60 minutes or until dough is easy to handle. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough on an 11-inch circle. Use to prepare Lemon-Vanilla Tart.

Oven-Candied Lemon Slices
Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Cut 2 small lemons crosswise into 1/8-to 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange in a single layer on pan. Sprinkle lemon slices with 1/4 cup sugar. Bake in preheated 275 degree F oven 45 to 50 minutes or until lemons are almost dry and covered with sugary glaze. While still warm, loosen slices from paper to prevent sticking.

Source: Better Homes and Gardens


Lisa H

This is making my mouth water. I LOVE lemon desserts, especially tarts and lemon bars. Yum! And I'm so happy my vanilla is getting good use!

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