This tart is to lemon lovers what crystallized ginger is to ginger aficionados—a sweet whammy of sharp flavor. It is also irresistible for its ease. Aside from some fine slicing of fruit, there is nothing off-putting for even a beginning baker.

Be sure to scout your markets for pretty lemons with thin, unblemished skin. Meyer lemons would be lovely here. So would Ranjipur limes or kumquats, or even a mixture of these puckery fruits.

This is a nice tart to serve while still a bit warm from the oven. A dollop of crème chantilly would be a fine adornment.

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Ingredients

  • 2 large lemons with thin, unblemished skin
  • Finely grated zest of 1 scrubbed lemon
  • cups sugar
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • Prebaked Tart Shell, partially baked

Method

  1. Scrub the lemons under warm water with an abrasive scrubber and a light liquid soap. Rinse well. Cut off both ends of the lemons to expose the fruit, then cut into paper-thin slices. Remove any seeds. Layer the lemon slices, zest, and sugar in a large bowl. Toss gently with a flexible spatula; set aside for 30 to 60 minutes. Toss again. Seal and set aside at room temperature for 8 hours or overnight, stirring once or twice, if convenient.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Move a rack to the upper third of the oven.
  3. Stir the lemon mixture and carefully remove any lingering seeds with a teaspoon. Whisk the eggs until light. Pour into the lemon mixture and mix well. Pour into the prebaked shell, distributing the lemons evenly and unfolding them, if necessary, with your fingers.
  4. Bake the tart until the filling is set and lightly golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Rotate the tart midway through baking to ensure even coloring. Remove to cool on a wire rack.
  5. Serve the tart warm or cool. It keeps beautifully overnight. Seal when completely cool, refrigerate, and let come to room temperature before serving.
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