Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Citrus Curd Tart

Two ancient limes and an equally old lemon stared at me accusingly every time I opened the refrigerator fruit drawer. After I learned that I could still safely use them, from a local cooking expert, I began to consider possible flavor combinations.

As those of us living throughout the Kansas City area endure one of the coldest, most snow-filled winters in recent memory, a tropical-tasting dessert sounded like the perfect solution. So I tracked down a lemon curd recipe (unfortunately, I have no idea where it came from, for attribution) - and decided that I could use a combination of lemon and lime instead. I then located a simple recipe for no-bake graham cracker crust, in my Better Homes & Gardens New Cook Book. Here's the result:

Citrus Curd Tart
Makes 8 servings


3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh lemon & lime juice
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 tablespoon grated lemon and/or lime peel

In the top of a double boiler, beat eggs and sugar together. Stir in citrus juices, butter and lemon peel. Bring water to a boil, reduce to simmer and cook/stir continuously for 15 minutes, or until thickened. Pour warm curd into another bowl and set aside.
Graham crust:

1/3 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups finely crushed graham crackers (about 18)

Melt butter and stir in sugar. Add crushed crackers, toss to mix well. Spread evenly into a 9-inch pie plate. Press onto bottom and sides to form a firm even crust. Chill about 1 hour or until firm (or, bake in a 375 degree oven for 4-5 minutes or till edge is lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack before filling.)
Pour curd into chilled (or baked/cooled) crust. Chill overnight. When ready to serve, top with lightly sweetened whipped cream,* and lemon or lime zest. 

*VOE - Although I have a big sweet tooth, the curd + crust seemed too sweet even for my tastes. The whipped cream helps tone down the sweetness a bit. Add only 3 (or 4) tablespoons of confectioners (or granulated) sugar to one cup of whipped cream. Then spoon a big dollop onto your slice and ENJOY!

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