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2013/09/16 / Shanan


Not to get all sappy, but there are times when it’s nice to be reminded of what caring, funny, and soulful  friends you have.  This past week was one of those times.

Rundown, stressed out, schedule-scrambly, unable to concentrate, falling into the trap of feeling like an inadequate parent… Hello, it’s me — pleasure to make your acquaintance.  But then a visit with Gillian, some face-time with Kauri, culminating in a warm, relaxed Friday night dinner with Dave and Sarah and Ed and Kim, kind of set everything at ease, at least for a little while.

Hope your week’s off to a good start; don’t forget to reach out and touch someone (you know, in a non-creepy way) — make an actual phone call (remember those?), cook for a friend, surprise them with a silly note.   You just might unknowingly make their day.

Here’s the lemon cream tart I made for our friend’s supper party; I adapted and melded together a couple of different recipes (via an old Gourmet magazine and the Tartine Bakery cookbook) and it was a big, luscious hit.

lemon cream tart with olive oil crust recipe


Ingredients for the tart shell: 

2 tbsp blanched almond flour

1/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup whole-wheat flour

pinch of sea salt

1/2 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes

1 egg yolk

3 1/2 tbsp olive oil (something fruity is recommended)

you’ll need a 9-inch round tart pan with removable side


Ingredients for the lemon cream:

1/2 cup + 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

3 large eggs

1 large egg yolk

3/4 cup sugar

a pinch of salt

2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes


Make It:

1.  Preheat oven to 425 F.  In a food processor, pulse almond flour with sugar, flour, and salt til well blended. Add butter and pulse til mixture is a coarse meal with pea-size lumps of butter.

2.  Add yolk and olive oil and pulse til just mixed. Gather dough in a ball in your hands and spread out evenly over the bottom of the pan, working it up the sides a little bit (1/2 an inch or so).  Chill til firm, 30 minutes or more.

3.  Bake tart shell til golden, for about 15 minutes.  Allow to cool completely before filling.

4.  In the meantime you can make the lemon cream.  Pour water into a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Find a stainless steel or heatproof glass bowl that can rest in the rim of the saucepan without touching the water below (a double-boiler set-up, essentially).

5.  Combine the lemon juice, eggs, egg yolk, sugar and salt in your bowl, whisk the ingredients and immediately set them over the saucepan.  Keep whisking until the  mixture is quite thick, about 12 minutes (you’re aiming for a temperature of 180 F if you’re using a thermometer).

6. Remove bowl from over saucepan and allow to cool for 15 minutes, stirring now and again to release heat.

7. Add lemon mixture to a blender and with motor running on low, add approx 1 tbsp of butter at a time, blending to combine after each addition.  The cream will be silky and opaque.

8. Pour the lemon cream into the tart shell and refrigerate til set, at least 2 hours.  The tart is best eaten the same day.

Extra Credit: Raspberry Whipped Cream

Whip 1 cup of heavy cream with 1 tsp of vanilla extract, after a couple of minutes, add a handful of fresh raspberries and continue whipping to your preferred stiffness.  Serve alongside the Lemon Cream Tart.

lemon cream tart with olive oil crust

Cozy, delicious, enjoy.  Photos by Shanan Kurtz / The Symmetric.

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