As the old saying goes, “When life gives you lemons…”. I could have made lemonade, but I was in an ooey gooey mood. With this rainy dreary weather that we’ve had for days, I needed some sunshine. There’s nothing more vibrant, rich, and tart than lemon curd. Lemon juice, lemon zest, lemon lemon lemon!!! I found my sunshine. *Hums the song ‘You are my sunshine, my only sunshine…’*
Citrus curds are one of my favorite fillings. You can take curd and fill a cupcake, put it in the center of a cookie, and of course the ultimate indulgence; pie. The main ingredient in Lemon Meringue pie of course is the magic that is lemon curd. I myself am not a meringue fan when it comes to pie. I will be spreading the lemon love in this Lemon Curd Tart, topped with Lemon Zested Whip Cream. *I can’t dance the Merengue either*
I love tarts of all shapes and sizes; from chocolate to whole berries, fruits and of course citrus. “It’s not about what’s on the outside, it’s about what’s on the inside that counts”. How true that can be for many things, but for tarts and pies the outside is like your homes foundation. I love a buttery and flaky crust as much as the next person, however, for citrus tarts I find a shortbread crust to be best. The melt in your mouth crust is full of cookie love. Top that with a tart citrus filling like lemon curd, and you’ve made dessert magic. *Like pulling a rabbit from a lemon tree*
Shortbread crusts are so simple, consisting of butter, flour, and sugar. No rolling or flour dusting required. The crust comes together so quickly and bakes so nicely, you’ll wonder why you haven’t made them more often. Once the crust is baked and cooled, you can pop them out of the tart pans. Most tart pans have a release insert that pushes up from the bottom. This makes the process so easy to remove the shell.
When it comes to filling anything, I prefer to pipe it in with a piping bag. This allows for an even fill. The mesmerizing swirl reminds me of those pinwheels for hypnosis. I find myself unable to look away. Unlike our inability to stare at the sun without seeing glowing orbs all day, this ray of sunshine can be admired for as long as you can control not devouring it. *I calculate about 60 seconds before it disappears*
On a sour note, pun intended, lemon curd’s rich and tart flavor can be overpowering. Topping a lemon pie with meringue balances out the sour with a little sweetness. I’m a fan of toppings, in this case whip cream is my go to Heavenly cloud. I’ve added lemon zest to the whipping cream, which gives it a little lemon punch. Citrus zest, because of its natural oils, is not as sour as the juice can be. Zest compliments the whip cream quite well. *Wouldn’t you like to live on a lemon cloud?*
Well there you have it. Your own personal slice of sunshine, topped with lemony clouds of cream. If this dessert doesn’t brighten your dark and rainy day, I don’t know what will. *Puppies….puppies always work*
*Recipe to be available upon cookbook release*