06 February 2009

Recipe: Lemon Tart with Almond Crust

Here in Louisiana we are big fans of the taste of lemon! We love lemon desserts, especially cakes, tarts and cookies. From a home cook in Paris, France comes this lovely easy tart. Enjoy!

Lemon Tart with Almond Crust
From: Alexandra de Waresquiel, Paris, France

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients for the Crust:

1 ¼ cups all purpose flour

1/3 cup whole almonds, toasted

1/3 cup sugar

½ teaspoon (scant amount) salt

½ cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

3 Tablespoons (about) ice water

½ teaspoon almond extract

Ingredients for the Filling:

2/3 cup fresh lemon juice

½ cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoon grated lemon peel

4 large eggs

Optional garnishes:
Toasted sliced almonds

Lemon slices

Whipped cream

Directions for Crust: Blend flour, whole toasted almonds, sugar and salt in processor until almonds are finely ground. Add chilled butter and cut in using on/off turns until mixture resembles coarse meal. Mix 3 Tablespoons ice water and ½ teaspoon almond extract in small bowl; add to processor and blend until moist clumps form, adding more water by teaspoonfuls if dough is dry. Gather dough into ball and flatten into disk. Wrap disk in plastic; refrigerate 1 hour. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Soften dough slightly at room temperature before continuing.)
Preheat oven to 375° F. Roll out dough on floured surface to 12-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter tart pan with removable bottom. Press dough into pan. Fold in dough overhang, pressing to adhere and forming double-thick sides. Pierce dough all over with fork. Freeze 20 minutes. Bake crust until golden brown, piercing with fork if crust bubbles, about 30 minutes. Cool crust on rack 15 minutes. Maintain oven temperature.

Directions for Filling: Whisk lemon juice, sugar and lemon peel in medium bowl to blend. Add eggs and whisk until well blended. Pour mixture into crust. Bake tart until filling is set, about 25 minutes. Cool completely.
Garnish tart with toasted almonds and lemon slices and pipe whipped cream rosettes around edges, if desired. Cut into wedges and serve.
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