This tangy and sweet dessert brightens up any dining table. A thick lemon curd fills a golden shortbread crust for a simple, zesty tart.
Back in the day all recipes were done by hand, so it’s fine if you don’t have an electric mixer. It will take a bit more time, but you get a nice arm workout!
Making dough is no easy task – be gentle and be sure to keep your dough chilled. If you don't have a rolling pin, use a clean glass bottle (wine is perfect, for example). If the dough starts to become sticky, add a sprinkle of flour.
If you've made this tart in advance, take it out of the fridge right before serving so that the lemon curd is firm and easy to slice.
Wow, you’ve got some beautiful ingredients! Once you’ve unpacked your Red Velvet kit, you may want to prepare a work surface (ideally not near heat) with parchment paper and a sprinkle of the flour you received. Alternatively, you can do this when it’s closer to the time to roll out your dough. Measure 1/2 cup of ice water and set aside. In two small bowls, separate 1 egg into whites and yolks; set aside yolk, and save white for another culinary adventure. Save 4 whole eggs for step 3.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and sugar. With your hands, work in cubes of cold butter until consistency resembles coarse sand (5 to 10 minutes). Mix the egg yolk with 1 tablespoon of ice water; incorporate into the dough. Press dough into a ball, ensuring even consistency; add more water if dough is too dry, but do not let it get sticky. Wrap in plastic film and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes before using.
Make filling. Using a vegetable peeler or zester, remove the rind of the lemons, avoiding the white pith. Mince rind so that the pieces resemble tiny beads. Squeeze the lemons to make 1/2 cup of juice and set the juice aside. In a medium bowl, use an electric mixer to cream butter and sugar (for filling) with lemon rind. Add 4 remaining whole eggs, one at a time; add lemon juice and salt. Mix until combined.
Pour the mixture into a large saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 10-15 minutes. The lemon curd will thicken at about 175°F degrees, or just below a simmer. To test for doneness, coat the back of a wooden spoon with the curd, and run a finger through it. If the part you've created stays put, your curd is done. Remove from the heat and let cool. Flour a work surface if you haven't already, and preheat oven to 400°F.
Take chilled dough out of the fridge and roll out on floured surface using a rolling pin. Roll out dough until it is one inch larger than tart pan. Press dough into the tart pan, covering the whole surface and trimming edges. Using a fork, prick the dough to make holes for air to escape. Place parchment paper and baking beans on top of the tart shell and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until light golden. Remove from oven, gently remove beans and paper, and let cool completely.
Fill the tart shell with lukewarm lemon curd and smooth over with a spoon or spatula. Allow to set at room temperature. Chill if not serving right away.