Thursday, 3 September 2009

Oops, or the tarte au citron that wasn't

Today I had intended to post a picture of a cute little individual tarte au citron with cream and raspberries on the side. Unfortunately when I took them out of the oven, a bit later than I meant to having been distracted by the fantastic thai salad my lovely housemate had made, I ldiscovered that if you cook lemon cream for too long if turns into something that resembles a cross between scrambled eggs and little souffles in pastry.

Once they'd been out of the oven for a bit they did deflate somewhat and, while not as smooth as I would have liked it the texture looked at least edible. It was just as I was about to take a bite that I realised they would not be edible: I had forgotten to add the sugar to the lemon-egg-cream mixture. Oops.

I hope that those of you who are less forgetful are more successful with this recipe (which is adapted from the Lemon Cream in Nigella Lawson's 'How To Eat').

For the pastry I used the same method as for Green Pie and used it to line four holes in a cupcake tin, then baked them blind for about 10 minutes.

Combine the zest and juice of one lemon, 100ml of double cream, one egg and 75g of sugar (N.B This is not optional) and if you have time leave it to stand in the fridge for an hour or so, or even overnight if you have time. This could be a good pudding to make if you have people coming round for dinner - make the pastry cases and the mixture the day before and then you only have to assemble and bake it on the day. Or make the whole thing the day beforehand, it keeps for a few days and I prefer it cold to hot.

Fill the pastry cases three-quarters full and put into an oven preheated to 150 degree for about 15 minutes - check them regularly to avoid making lemon-scented scrambled eggs.

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