The Perfect Dessert for this Gray Day

April 2, 2016




1⁄2 cup cashews (or unsalted almonds, hazelnuts or pecans)

3⁄4 cup flour

1⁄4 cup confectioners’ sugar

10 tablespoons butter (divided)
3 tablespoons olive oil

5 large eggs, separated

4 large lemons
3⁄4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch


Begin by making a tart shell. If you have some nuts on hand—I like cashews in this crust, but unsalted almonds,  hazelnuts or pecans are also excellent—carefully toast a handful, then grind them in a spice grinder or food processor with the flour, the con- fectioner’s sugar, and a pinch of salt. Put the nut mixture into a bowl and cut in 4 tablespoons of butter with two knives until it is the size of peas. Stir in the olive oil (if you’re use pecans, cut the olive oil in half), and 1 egg yolk.

Form the dough into a disk, put it between two pieces of plastic wrap, and roll it out to an 11-inch round. Press the dough gently into a 9-inch tart shell with a removable bottom, and chill for half an hour. Bake in a 400-degree oven for about 15 minutes and allow to cool on a rack.

To make the filling, grate the zest from 1 lemon. Squeeze all 4 lemons and mix the juice with the zest. Put the lemon mixture into a heavy-bottomed non-reactive pot and whisk in the sugar and cornstarch. Whisk in 2 eggs plus 2 additional yolks.

Put the pot on the stove and turn the heat to medium high.Whisk constantly until the mixture begins to boil, then keep whisking for a couple more minutes until the mixture is smooth and thick.

Remove from the heat, add 6 tablespoons of butter (cut into pieces), and whisk the mixture until the butter has vanished. Spread into the tart shell and allow to cool. Put the tart in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.

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