Lime curd tart

  • Preparation Time25 mins
  • Cooking Time50 mins
  • Serves6
  • DifficultyMedium

For the pastry shell

180g unsalted butter at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
110g caster sugar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla essence
280g plain flour
Pinch salt

For the filling

4 limes at room temperature
350g caster sugar
110g unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1/8 tsp salt
1) Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas mark 4. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the butter and caster sugar together until they are just combined. Add the vanilla.

2) In a medium bowl, sift together the plain flour and salt, then add them to the butter-and-caster sugar mixture. Mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together. Dump onto a surface dusted with plain flour and shape into a flat disk.

3) Press the dough into a 25cm-round or 22.5cm-square false-bottom pie tin, making sure that the finished edge is flat. Chill until firm.

4) Butter 1 side of a square of aluminium foil to fit inside the pastry shell and place it, buttered side down, on the pastry. Fill with beans or rice. Bake for 20 minutes.

5) Remove the foil and beans, prick the tart all over with the tines of a fork, and bake again for 20 to 25 minutes more, or until lightly browned. Allow to cool to room temperature.

6) Remove the zest of 4 limes with a vegetable peeler or zester, being careful to avoid the white pith. Squeeze the limes to make 110ml of juice and set the juice aside.

7) Put the zest in a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the caster sugar and process for 2 to 3 minutes, until the zest is very finely minced. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter with the caster sugar and lime zest.

8) Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and then add the lime juice and salt. Mix until combined. Pour the mixture into a 4L saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 10 minutes. the lime curd will thicken at about 79C, or just below a simmer. Remove from the heat and set aside.

9) Fill the tart shell with warm lime curd and allow to set at room temperature. once set, serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.

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