Let's just close our eyes and pretend it's already summer, yes?
If you're in Vancouver, it hasn't been that hard to do the last few weeks. High temperatures had me skipping around in sun dresses, eating way too many hot dogs, and thinking of all the delicious summer treats that lay ahead.
Aside from the awesome weather (which now seems to have disappeared), know how else I can tell we're nearing the sunny season? Spiders. So many damn spiders up in my house. There are benefits to a ground floor apartment (less elevator BS, a little yard, easy escape from fires), but then there are the spiders and bugs. Definitely one of the downsides.
Thankfully, none of that can deter me from making a sunny dessert - this easy lemon tart that's the perfect combination of sweet and sour. The crust is buttery and slightly sweet, and the lemon curd filling is refreshing and light. It's a bit messy, but that's kind of what summer is all about.
Summer Lemon Tart
2 cups flour
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp cold butter, cut into pieces
1/3 cup sugar (could be reduced to 1/4 cup)
1/4 cup ice cold water (optional)
3/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (about 3-4 lemons)
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tablespoon corn starch
1/8 teaspoon salt
Begin by making the pastry. Mix the flour and salt together in a large bowl. Cut in the butter, and pinch with the fingers to make fine crumbs. Make a well in the middle. Stir together egg and sugar, and pour into the well.
Swiftly mix in with the fingertips until the mixture forms a dough. If needed, add one tablespoon of the cold water at a time. Do not overmix. Divide into 2 disks, wrap in plastic, and chill in fridge for at least an hour.
Preheat oven to 350F. Roll out one half of the chilled dough, and press into an 8 or 9inch tart or pie dish. Line with foil, and fill with beans or rice. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the foil. Piece the bottom of the tart with a fork, then bake again until golden brown - about 20 more minutes.
To make the filling, in a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the eggs, lemon juice, and sugar. Whisk to combine. Whisk together the cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of water, and add to the pan. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of it. The mixture should reach a simmer, but no higher. Stir in the butter.
Pour the lemon curd into the baked tart pastry and allow to set.