That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Creamy Lemon Tart slice garnished with raspberries and cream

Creamy Lemon Tart

This Creamy Lemon Tart is bursting with lemon flavor and incredibly luscious and tasty!

This Lemon Curd Tart was created for a bridal shower. When I learned the bride to be loved lemon, I turned to Dorie Greenspan for her take on a glorious citrus dessert.

Overhead view of Creamy Lemon Tart on a white plate

Creamy Lemon Tart

I made two of these exquisite lemon tarts for a bridal shower last weekend. As with most French sweets, they had just enough sugar and a nice citrus bite. Dorie Greenspan created a creamy filling without cream by using eggs, butter and a blender. Such an intriguing method to make lemon curd. She was inspired by Pierre Herme’s emulsified lemon “cream” or curd.

Plus her recipe utilized one of my favorite tricks—to rub the lemon zest into the sugar to release all the essential oils from the peel. That provides an extra boost of lemon flavor that makes this lemon curd tart one crazy delicious dessert!

 

Slice of Creamy Lemon Tart on a white dessert plate

Tips for Making a Creamy Lemon Curd Tart Filling

The lemon curd filling is not made in the typical fashion. Because the butter does not melt and resolidify, it’s super silky and luscious.

PRO-Tip: Rubbing lemon zest into the sugar releases the lemon oils which adds even more lemon flavor than simply mixing.

Once the custard thickens over a double boiler, it’s slowly added to a blender to be emulsified with a boatload of butter. Definitely a new method for me.

If your blender motor starts getting warm, just blend for short spurts until the mixture is thick and creamy. A food processor is another alternative, but Dorie states that the blender is her preferred method.

An offset spatula is perfect for smoothing and swirling the top of the lemon curd tart. 

Lemon slices make a pretty garnish, but remove before slicing. Alternatively, pipe whipped cream stars around the perimeter of the filling and top each mound with a ripe red raspberry.

Bill, a bona fide lemon lover, sampled the leftover lemon filling in my blender and gave it two thumbs up. This Creamy Lemon Tart was a smash hit at the shower! This double Dark Chocolate Tart would pair nicely with this lemon gem if you need another alternative!

Close view of Creamy Lemon Tart on a white serving dish

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This recipe was originally posted in March, 2016. The text and photos were updated in 2019.

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Slice of Creamy Lemon Tart on a white dessert plate

Creamy Lemon Tart

A tart and dreamy Creamy Lemon Tart adapted from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

  • Author: Liz Berg
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert, Tart
  • Method: Baking, Mixing, Boiling
  • Cuisine: French

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • Finely grated zest of 3 lemons
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 4 lemons)
  • 2 sticks plus 5 tablespoons (10 1/2 ounces) butter, at room temperature and cut into tablespoon-sized pieces
  • 1 9-inch tart shell, baked and cooled ( I used Dorie’s press in tart dough)

Instructions

  1. Set up your double boiler by bringing a few inches of water to a boil in a saucepan (choose one whose size works to fit on top of the pan).
  2. Put the sugar and zest in a large, heat-proof bowl that can be fitted into the pan of simmering water. Rub the sugar and zest between your fingers till it’s well incorporated and fragrant. Whisk in the eggs then the lemon juice.
  3. Fit the bowl into the pan and make sure the water doesn’t touch your bowl. Whisk until the mixture reaches 180º. Don’t stop whisking or you may get bits of scrambled eggs in your custard. Start checking the temperature when you notice the custard getting thick.
  4. Remove from heat, then strain the lemon custard (to remove any bits of egg) right into your blender. Let cool about 10 minutes, then blend on high, adding 4-5 pieces of butter at a time. Scrape down the sides of your blender as needed. Once all butter is added, blend for a couple more minutes.
  5. Pour the lemon filling into a container, press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface to create an airtight seal and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. When you are ready to construct the tart, just whisk the filling to loosen it and spoon it into the tart shell. Spread and swirl with an offset spatula if desired.
  6. Best when served immediately, but can be chilled overnight to serve.

Notes

You will need an instant read thermometer to make the filling.
Total time does not include chilling time or the making and baking the crust if you choose to do a homemade version.

 

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52 comments on “Creamy Lemon Tart”

  1. Dear Liz, I believe that Lemon Tarts are some of my favorite tarts. I love lemons, refreshing summertime desserts and a pretty presentation – so, this would be perfect for my dessert table!
    Andrea

  2. This would be so hard to resist!!

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