Lemon Cream Tart with Whipped Cream
Makes 8 servings
This cream can be used on toast, a filling for cakes and pies are spooned over fruit.
1 cup sugar
Grated zest of 3 lemons
½ tsp cornstarch
4 large eggs
¾ cup fresh lemon juice (from 4-5 large lemons)
2 sticks plus 5 Tbl unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, at room temperature
1 9-inch tart shell made with sweet tart dough (recipe follows)
Have an instant read thermometer, a strainer and a blender or food processor at hand. Bring a few inches of water to a simmer in a saucepan.
Put the sugar and the zest in a large heatproof bowl that can be set over the pan of simmering water. Off the heat, rub the sugar and zest together between your fingers until the sugar is moist, grainy and aromatic add cornstarch. Whisk in the eggs, followed by the lemon juice.
Set the bowl over the pan and start stirring with the whisk as soon as the mixture feels tepid to the touch. Cook lemon cream until it reaches 180 degrees. You need to constantly whisk to keep the eggs from scrambling. The cream will start out light and foamy, then the bubbles will get bigger, as it gets closer to 180 degrees, it will start to thicken and the whisk will leave tracks. That means the cream is almost ready. Getting up to the temperature can take as long as 10 minutes.
As soon as it reaches temperature remove the cream from the heat and strain into the blender. Let the cream stand until it cools about 10 minutes.
Turn the blender to high and, with machine running add the butter about 5 pieces at a time. Scrape down the sides of the blender as needed. Once the butter is in, keeps the machine running to get the perfect light, airy texture of lemon cream, you need to let it cream for another 3 minutes.
Pour the cream into a container, press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface to create an air tight seal and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. The cream can be made 4 days in advance or freeze for up to 2 months. When ready to assemble the tart, just whisk the cream to loosen it and spoon it into the tart shell. Serve tart right away, or refrigerate until needed. Serve with whipped cream.
Ingredients for the crust
1 stick (8 Tbl unsalted butter, room temperature
¼ cup sugar
2 Tbl confectioners ‘sugar
¼ tsp fine sea salt
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
1 ¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
Working in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or a using a hand mixer, butter, both sugars, and salt together on low speed until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes just to blend.
Drop the yolk and beat until incorporated, then beat in vanilla extract. Turn off the blender and add the flour and mix until just combined, or use a mixer and quickly mix together.
Center rack in the oven and pre heat the oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 9 to 91/2 “ tart pan with a removable bottom. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment and roll out the dough to fit into the pan or spread into pan with your fingers. Put the pan on a baking sheet.
Bake the tart crust for 20-25 minutes or until the streusel is golden brown. Cool on rack for 15 minutes. Spoon Lemon Cream into cooked tart shell. Remove the sides of pan to cut and serve.