Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Lemon-Blackberry Tart

Jen's receipts (the old-fashioned spelling of recipe) are always the best, hands down. I don't know how she does it, especially working full-time and with her two kids, but I am amazed and grateful that she takes the time to share with the fans. The idea of lemon and blackberry together was just too much for me to resist, and wouldn't you know I had just the perfect occasion to try this recipe: Amy Tudor and our gardener Jenna's, birthday party! 

As you already know, we love parties! Amy and Jenna have birthdays close together, so we celebrated them on one sunny, perfect May day, after spending the morning in the garden. Winslow made some mac 'n cheese, Christina brought a beautiful salad, and we had this gorgeous tart from Jen Tudor's receipt.

 party setting

I have to admit this is one of the easiest recipes for such a sophisticated and enviable result! Jen says (on our recipe page) that this is easily play-around-able. I searched high and low (three stores) to find miniature tart pans, but to no avail. I couldn't even find miniature pie pans! So I improvised and used just a regular pie dish, which worked out just fine. The crust shrunk enough in the pan that it was the perfect height for a tart. I also opted to make my own lemon curd (this recipe from Joy of Baking is quite easy), but for those of you in a rush, the jarred variety will work perfectly fine. Lemon curd might seem intimidating, but it's just eggs, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, and butter over a double boiler.

ready for lemon curd

I've noticed that thin-skinned lemons have the most juice and are not great for zesting, but thick-skinned lemons have less juice but great zest.

I made the lemon curd the night before, and baked the crust, too. The next day I just assembled everything. I had some lemon curd leftover, so I spread a thin layer on top of the cream-cheese/lemon-curd filling for good measure. You can't have too much lemon in my book! I arranged the blackberries in a circle, and decorated with some johnny-jump-ups from the barrel right outside the Rookery door. 

 Too pretty to eat? Almost, but definitely not!

Jen suggests spooning the sauce over the tart, but we served this with vanilla ice cream and spooned the sauce over the ice cream. Easiest sauce ever, I will be making that all summer (it's just jam and lemon juice! But so delicious!). 

This truly received rave reviews. I think it will be my new standard "summer entertaining" recipe. Have you tried it? Let us know what you think, and send us pictures so we can share! Don't forget, the recipe is available by clicking here!

Happy baking!

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