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Recipe

Roasted Lemon Tart

Servings: 8 to 10

The roasted lemon adds intense color and mellow, smooth flavor to the lemon curd filling in this dessert.

Ingredients

For the crust

  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 4 medium lemons, washed, ends trimmed, and halved crosswise (about 1-1/2 lb.)
  • 6-3/4 oz. (1-1/2 cups) all-purpose flour; more for dusting
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2-1/2 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 4 oz. (8 Tbs.) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 Tbs. cold vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces
  • 3 Tbs. ice water; more as needed
  • Nonstick cooking spray

For the lemon curd

  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup strained roasted lemon juice
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 4 oz. (8 Tbs.) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 Tbs. confectioners’ sugar
  • Caramelized lemon slices, for garnish (see tip, below)

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 490
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 300
  • Fat (g): 34
  • Saturated Fat (g): 19
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 10
  • Cholesterol (mg): 225
  • Sodium (mg): 100
  • Carbohydrates (g): 41
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Sugar (g): 25
  • Protein (g): 5

Preparation

Make the crust

  • Position a rack in the center of the oven, and heat the oven to 450°F. Brush a large foil-lined rimmed baking sheet with some of the oil. Put the lemon halves close together flesh side up in the center of the prepared sheet. Brush the cut tops with the remaining oil. Roast until the lemons are puffy, just beginning to lightly brown on the edges, and the foil under the lemons turns dark brown and syrupy, 25 to 27 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. When the lemons are cool, squeeze them through a fine-mesh strainer over a measuring cup to yield 1/2 cup juice (if you have less than 1/2 cup juice, put the lemon halves in a bit of warm water, squeezing to release more juice, and top off as needed). Set aside. Mince half of a lemon peel to measure 2 packed Tbs., and set aside. Discard the rest of the lemons.
  • Combine the flour, salt, lemon peel, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine, about 10 times. Add the butter and shortening, and pulse until the fat is no bigger than peas, 20 to 22 times.
  • While pulsing, add 3 Tbs. of the water; add more 1 Tbs. at a time until the mixture starts to form large clumps but does not ball up around the blade. The dough should hold together when you squeeze it. Dump the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap on a work surface, gently knead into a ball, then shape into a disk about 7 inches in diameter. Wrap the dough tightly in the plastic, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
  • Roll the chilled dough between lightly floured sheets of parchment into a circle approximately 13 inches in diameter and about 1/4 inch thick. Transfer the dough to a 9-1/2-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Gently fit the dough into the pan without stretching it.  Using lightly floured fingertips, gently press the dough into the corners and sides of the tart pan. Run a rolling pin over the top to trim excess dough. Refrigerate for 30 to 45 minutes.
  • Position a rack in the center of the oven, and heat the oven to 375°F. Put the tart shell on a large rimmed baking sheet. Lightly spray a piece of parchment with cooking spray. Line the crust with the parchment cooking-spray side down on the dough, fill with dry beans or pie weights, and bake until the edges are light golden-brown, about 20 minutes.
  • Carefully remove the parchment and pie weights. Return the tart shell to the oven, and continue to bake until the shell is lightly browned, 8 to 9 minutes more. Remove from the oven. If the pastry has puffed up, gently pierce with a fork until it deflates. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

Make the filling

  • Combine the yolks, lemon juice, sugar, vanilla, and salt into a medium saucepan over medium heat, and cook, whisking continuously, until the mixture is thick and coats the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Gradually add the butter, whisking to incorporate. Remove from the heat, and strain into a bowl, taking care to scrape the curd from the bottom of the strainer. Pour the curd into the cooled crust.
  • Put a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until completely cold and no longer jiggly, at least 5 hours or up to overnight.
  • Combine the cream and confectioners’ sugar in a medium bowl. With an electric hand mixer, whip the cream to stiff peaks. Arrange the caramelized lemon slices on top of the tart, and serve with the whipped cream on the side.

Tip

To make caramelized lemon slices: Grease a wire rack with nonstick cooking spray. Thinly slice lemons and dip each slice into granulated sugar. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat, and put the lemon slices in the pan. Cook until the sugar starts to melt and caramelize around the edges, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook until browned, another 2 minutes. Remove from the skillet, and set on the prepared rack to cool.

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