Lemon curd tart has been my mom's favorite dessert for as long as I can remember, so I've made it for her for Mother's Day for as long as I've known how to bake. If you don't know your mom's favorite dessert, you should learn it and make it for her immediately and score all of the points. My mom first tried lemon curd on an anniversary trip to London and has been obsessed with it ever since. This one is super creamy and thick, but still manages to feel light and tangy. The crust used is called pate sucree, with basically translates to sugar dough.
Yields one 9 inch tart or five 3 inch tartlets
1 1/2 cups AP flour
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until soft. Slowly add the sugar and beat until fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Add in the egg, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula after. Pour in the flour and salt and mix on slow until cohesive. Form the dough into a slightly flat and round shape, then wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly spray or butter a 9 inch tart pan with a removable bottom. When the dough is ready, press it evenly over the bottoms and sides of the pan (I used the plastic top of the spray can to help press it down and into the corners evenly). Using a fork or knife, prick the bottom and sides of the dough a few dozen times so steam will release. Place in the freezer for 15-20 minutes and preheat the oven to 400 degrees. When ready, place the tart on a sheet pan and place in the oven. Bake for 5 minutes and then lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Bake for another 15-25 minutes until the crust is evenly light brown. Cool completely.
Lemon Curd Recipe:
3/4 sheet gelatin (here)
1/4 cup + 3 T (About 2 1/2 eggs)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup + 3 T fresh lemon juice (About 2 1/2 lemons)
5 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
Zest from 1/2 a lemon
Soften the gelatin in a bowl of ice water. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, sugar and lemon juice together in a medium saucepan. Place the pan over low-medium heat and whisk constantly until the mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the pan as you stir, otherwise the eggs will cook at the bottom. Be patient, it does take a while for it to thicken. Remove from heat and whisk gently for a minute allowing some steam to release. Add in the softened gelatin and whisk in completely. Pass the curd through a strainer and then pour into a blender. Blend on low speed, adding the butter a chunk at a time. Blend until totally cohesive and then pour into a bowl, stirring in the zest. Cool to room temperature and then pour into the tart crust. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour until completely set.