You will need
For the tart shell:
200g butter, softened
100g caster sugar
½ egg yolk
12 ½ ml thickened cream
250g plain flour
1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
For the filling:
300g caster sugar
Finely grated zest of 3 lemons
250 ml strained lemon juice
250 ml thickened cream
1.Preheat the oven to 180ºC/Gas mark 4. Line a baking tray with baking paper and place a 20 centimetre diameter by four centimetre-deep dessert ring on top.
2. To make the pate sablee, place the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Work the butter slowly on a low speed until smooth. Add the sugar and mix together on a medium speed until combined, taking care not to aerate it too much. Roll out to line the ring and freeze the tart shell until very firm.
3. To make the filling, rub the lemon zest into the sugar to release the oils. Whisk the eggs together with the lemon zest and sugar mixture until foamy. Stir in the lemon juice, then the cream, and set aside for the proteins to begin breaking down while you blind bake the tart shell.
4. To blind bake the tart shell, remove it from the freezer and line carefully with foil. Make sure the foil is flush with all the surfaces of the pastry. Remember any creases or spaces will result in faults in the shell.
5. Fill the shell all the way to the top with uncooked rice and fold the foil down around the edge of the ring. Bake the shell for about 20 minutes.
6. Flick the foil upwards and pull gently to release the steam. Bake for a further 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove the foil and rice carefully and return to the oven. Reduce the oven temperature 130ºC/Gas mark 1 and continue baking until the tart shell is dry and golden brown all over.
7. Remove the shell. If there are any cracks, use a little of the pastry scraps and the beaten egg yolk to patch them up while the tart shell is still hot.
8. Whisk the filling briefly and skim off any big bubbles. Return the shell to the oven and with the door open, pour the filling into the shell right to the top. Carefully close the oven door and bake undisturbed for 50 minutes. Check the tart by very gently wobbling the tray. If the filling still seems liquid, give the tart another five to ten minutes.
Recipe, PS Desserts by Philippa Sibley (Hardie Grant Books)
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