Tarte au Citron
These lovely individual tarts can make their appearance any season of the year—simply substitute whichever of your favorite citrus fruit is in season for the garnish and purchased juice for the blood orange juice.
The shells, Myer lemon curd, and blood orange gelée can all be made a day in advance. Follow the directions for softening the chilled gelée when you assemble the tarts.
• 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
• 2/3 cup powdered sugar
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1 egg
• 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Meyer Lemon Curd:
• 1/2 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
• 1 tablespoon cold water
• 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 1/2 cup purchased crème fraîche
• 1/4 cup Meyer lemon juice or lemon juice
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 4 egg yolks
• 1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
Blood Orange Gelée:
• 3/4 cup blood orange juice
• 2 tablespoons light-color corn syrup
• 1/4 cup granulated sugar
• 1-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
• 2 ounces white chocolate
• Grapefruit, orange, blood orange and/or other citrus sections
In medium bowl beat butter with electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add powdered sugar and salt; beat until smooth. Add egg; beat until combined. Beat in as much flour as you can with mixer. Stir in any remaining flour with wooden spoon. Wrap dough; chill 1 hour or until easy to handle. Place dough between two sheets of parchment paper. Roll to 1/8 inch thick. If necessary, chill rolled sheet of dough until firm enough to handle.
Preheat oven to 325°F. Using 3-1/2-inch round cutter, cut 10 rounds
from tart dough, rerolling scraps as necessary. Transfer rounds to 10 (3-inch) individual tart pans* (measure across top). Ease pastry into
pans, press into sides, and trim edges. Prick bottoms and sides of tart
shells. Place on large baking sheet. (Cover and chill any remaining dough for another use.) Bake tart shells 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on baking sheet on wire rack. Remove shells from pans.
Meyer Lemon Curd:
In small bowl sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon gelatin over 1 tablespoon cold water. Let stand 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, in medium saucepan combine granulated sugar, crème fraîche, lemon juice, and salt. Bring to boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Place egg yolks in small bowl. Gradually whisk about half of hot mixture into egg yolks. Return egg mixture and gelatin to saucepan. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat. Gradually whisk in butter until melted. Strain finished lemon curd through fine mesh sieve into small bowl. Place bowl with lemon curd in larger bowl of ice water; stir for a few minutes to cool mixture. Cover surface of lemon curd with plastic wrap. Store cooled lemon curd in refrigerator until ready to use. (Curd will thicken as it chills.)
Blood Orange Gelée:
In small saucepan combine blood orange juice, corn syrup, and 2 tablespoons granulated sugar. Bring to boil.
In small bowl combine remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and 1-1/2 teaspoons gelatin. Whisking constantly, slowly pour sugar mixture into boiling liquid. Continue to boil, whisking constantly, for 1 minute to dissolve gelatin. Transfer mixture to shallow bowl. Chill 45 minutes or until partially set. (You should be able to spread mixture onto plate, where it should hold its shape. If mixture thickens too much in refrigerator, place bowl of gelée into larger bowl of warm water and whisk until softened.) Spoon 1 to 2 tablespoons of partially-set mixture onto center of 10 salad plates. Using small offset spatula, spread mixture on each plate. Cover plates; chill until gelée is firm.
In small heavy saucepan melt white chocolate over low heat. Using pastry brush, lightly coat inside of each baked tart shell with thin layer of melted white chocolate. (This will prevent any moisture from lemon curd from making tart shells soggy before serving.) Let stand until set. (To speed process, place coated tart shells in refrigerator for a few minutes.) Spoon curd into each prepared tart shell. Use small offset spatula to smooth top of lemon curd to edges of shells so it forms an even surface. Decorate top of each tart with citrus segments. Place tart on top of gelée on each plate to serve. Makes 10 servings.
Tip: If you do not have 10 tart pans, bake as many tart shells as you have pans for. Cool slightly and remove shells from pans. Bake remaining shells. Once tart shells have cooled, they can be tightly wrapped and stored overnight until you’re ready to use.