Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Rhubarb and Lemon Curd Tart

I suppose if I wanted to make life easier I would have used my standard never fail sweet shortcrust pastry but then again, I do like exploring new recipes.

I was very interested to try a Sour Cream Pastry recipe by Sophie Young that I spied in the latest Vogue Entertaining & Travel magazine. The free-form tart looked awfully fetching (but then so does all food photographed by Petrina Tinslay) and it seemed that it would be ideal for this rhubarb and lemon curd tart I had planned to make.

No complaints in making the pastry, it all went well...except when it went in the oven.

It was fortuitous that I peeked at about the 10 minute mark and saw that my tart was, for want of a better word, melting. The pastry is so short and there isn't any egg to help bind it, that the heat was making it virtually dissolve into an unrecognisable mass.

Desperate measures were needed to try to hold this tart together - I somehow managed to scoop it onto a flexible board and reposition it in a high-sided baking pan, all the while trying to re-shape it back into its original rectangle.

The high-sided tray made one side come back into alignment - the other side I managed to reinforce with an edge made from a row of small soufflé dishes. Yes, it ended up wider than planned but I must say, the pastry itself was worth the drama.

It combines the right amount of crispness with that melt in the mouth feel - it's like having a tart made from shortbread! I have learnt a valuable lesson which is that next time I will not make a free-form tart but use the pastry to line a baking tin, that should contain the unwanted spread. It does though leave me wondering about that magazine photo.

Rhubarb and Lemon Curd Tart

Rhubarb and Lemon Curd Tart

half portion of Lemon Curd
Stewed Rhubarb, drained (stew the rhubarb until they have just softened but not broken down)
Sour cream Pastry
250 grams plain flour
60 grams icing sugar, sifted
200 grams chilled butter, cut into small cubes
80 grams sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste/vanilla extract

Make the pastry:
Place the flour, icing sugar, butter into a food processor and pulse until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
Add in the sour cream and vanilla and continue to pulse until the mixture begins to come together.
Place onto a lightly floured board and very gently press together to form a rectangle.
Cover in plastic wrap and store in the fridge for a few hours.

Roll out to form a large rectangle about 25cmx40cm (10x16 inch) - you can trim the edges but I kept them uneven. Place the rolled pastry onto a baking paper lined tray.

Spread the lemon curd evenly along the centre of the pastry leaving a 2 inch/4cm border all around.

Position the rhubarb pieces over the lemon curd and then fold the border over the filling.

rhubarb and lemon curd tart - ready for the oven

Brush the pastry with milk and then place in a preheated 180°C/350°F oven for about 30 minutes or until golden and cooked through. If you feel the pastry is browning too quickly, cover with foil.

rhubarb and lemon curd tart

Let the tart sit on the tray for about 15 minutes before placing it on a wire rack to cool.

As I mentioned at the start, this is not how I would make the tart again - I would place the rolled dough into a rectangle fluted tart pan and proceed from there.

rhubarb and lemon curd tart

It doesn't look as nice as it could have but you can't fault the taste. The lemon curd and rhubarb are meant for one another, the pleasant tang of the curd really coming through to compliment the rhubarb. Better yet, it's not a bad use of leftovers!


  1. AnonymousJune 04, 2008

    Rhubarb and lemon, why didn't I think of that combination!? The tart looks really delicious - I can almost taste it! A must-try!

  2. This is so beautiful, and it sounds like a great combination :)

  3. AnonymousJune 04, 2008

    on the contrary - I love the look. It looks very natural and homey

  4. My lips are puckering in anticipation. And I love the long skinny presentation of the tart.

  5. Lemon and Rhubarb is a great combination. I can just imagine the silky smoothness of the filling!

  6. Thanks Angelica - I was especially pleased that they worked so well together

    Thanks Magpie!

    Thanks Ana - it tasted good so in the end what it looked like really didn't matter

    Thanks Erin!

    Thanks Rose!

  7. I love sour cream pastry and rhubarb and lemon sounds heavenly. Pity there were problems when it went into the oven. Sounds like it should have worked the way a freeform galette does, in theory.

    By the way, am also a fan of Petrina Tinslay's photography :)

  8. Hi Y - I really do think the pastry is great but I don't think I'll risk making another free-form tart with it ;)

  9. I never cared for Rhubarb, but absolutely love lemon curds. I must try it!

  10. Hope you do try it Estelle - the rhubarb finds a wonderful match in lemon curd, the sum is greater than the parts.


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