At the behest of the wee boy and inspired by the Great British Bake Off, we are making a tart. It did start off as being a custard tart, but after having watched the GBBO again, the wee boy has decided it should be a Lemon Tart. Now the thing is, Lemon Tart sounds a little bit run of the mill and unappealing. However, say or write it in French and all of a sudden it has an elegance and beauty that holds great appeal.
Tarte au Citron.
Furthermore, I have to admit that having seen Norman’s* Tarte au Citron I did think to myself ‘surely even I could have done better than that’.
So we are trying it out.
I don’t have my own recipe for Tarte au Citron, so I searched for Mary Berry’s recipe in honour of said television programme. Her tart is called Classic Lemon Tart, so this is what we’re making.
Of course there are always pitfalls when you first follow another persons recipe. It’s difficult to decipher what is vital and what is flexible. As I read the recipe the first thing that comes to my attention is the following:
You will need a 28cm deep loose-bottomed tart tin
I don’t have a deep loose-bottomed tart tin so opt for an old ceramic 1980’s flan dish that used to be my mum’s. It could be my undoing but I’ll never know unless I give it a go so, I continue.
There is then an absolute revelation that occurs to me whilst reading about blind baking the pastry case. For years I have just put the ceramic baking beans on top of the pastry and for years it has come out looking like a mountainous range for ants, burnt around the edges. But now, I realise where I have been going wrong. You are supposed to put what I know as greaseproof paper, but what the recipe refers to as non stick paper (I don’t know why, please don’t ask me) over the raw pastry and THEN put the ceramic baking beans on top. I also used to call them baking beads. Turns out they’re called baking beans. Who knew eh?
Back to the Tart.
Having done the blind baking etc, our pastry case is left to cool as we prepare the filling. When I say we, I’m being generous. The wee boy has taken to defeating someone or other and I am left to do the filling on my own. To be honest there’s not much to it. Just a case of chucking a few things into a bowl and giving it a little whisk. However, it is at this point that I consider the possibility that the flan case I have is not 28cm. And as I pour the lemon filling into the pastry case, it becomes obvious.
Not wanting to waste a single drop I decide to cook the extra in my love heart silicone cases. All well and good until, not concentrating, I turn them upside down to cool on the wire rack, forgetting that they are liquid and will only solidify when cold, if at all.
Ah well, the lemon filling tastes divine and will be glorious mixed in to some yoghurt.
And the tart? Well that has turned out rather well, all things considered.
*has a slight toot on trumpet*
*Norman is a surly Scot on the GBBO who refuses to do ‘anything fancy’. Sadly his downfall last week.