Mei-Yu Lo - Lemons One
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Fresh Lemon Chess Tart in Spiced Almond Crust




"My tongue is smiling."
~ Abigail Trillin

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Fresh Lemon Chess Tart in Spiced Almond Crust
Bon Appetit February 1987

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/3 cup toasted blanched almonds, finely ground
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground mace
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) well-chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 egg yolk
1 to 3 tablespoons cold milk

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
4 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
Pinch of salt
4 eggs
2 egg yolks
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons finely grated lemon peel [zest]
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Powdered sugar
Lemon slices
Whipped cream

For crust: Mix flour, almonds, sugar, lemon peel, salt, ground mace, nutmeg and cinnamon in work bowl of food processor. Using on/off turns, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Blend in egg yolk and just enough milk to bind dough; do not firm ball. Gather dough together; flatten to disc. Wrap in waxed paper and plastic and refrigerate at least 3 hours. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead.)
Very lightly butter 10-inch tart pan with removable sides. Roll pastry out between sheets of waxed paper to 1/8-inch-thick round. Transfer to prepared pan, discarding paper and pressing gently into bottom and up sides. Run rolling pin across top to trim pastry. Refrigerate at least 1 hour. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead to this point.)
Position rack in lower third of oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Pierce bottom of crust with fork. Line with parchment or foil and fill with pie weights or dry beans. Bake 12 minutes. Remove weights and paper and continue baking until crust is light brown, about 7 minutes. Cool on rack. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

For filling
: Using electric mixer cream butter until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup sugar 1/3 cup at a time and beat until light and fluffy. Blend in cornstarch and salt. Mix in eggs 1 at a time, then mix in yolks 1 at a time. Stir in fresh lemon juice, grated lemon peel and vanilla; mixture may separate. Pour filling into crust. Bake until top is pale golden brown and custard is set, about 30 minutes. Cool completely on rack. Dust top with powdered sugar. Arrange lemon slices in center. Serve with whipped cream if desired.

Index - Pie Recipe Archives
Basic Pie Crust Recipes

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