Jane’s Sweets & Baking Journal -- janessweets.blogspot.com -- February 2012

The tart filling recipe below has been adapted from the book, Flour: Spectacular Recipes from Boston’s Flour Bakery & Cafe, by Joanne Chang & Christie Matheson; Chronicle Books, 2010. Please see pages 200-221.)  The tart dough recipe below has been adapted from Tastebook at this link: http://www.tastebook.com/recipes/2968191-Semolina-Shortbread-Tart-Fresh-Berries-Honey-Gelato-Milk-Streusel

Lemon-Lime Tarts with Semolina Shortbread Crust

 

Yield for tart dough: Enough to make at least 12 tart shells that are 3-4" in diameter (I used only about half of the dough, to make seven tarts, and froze the rest for future use.)

Yield for tart filling: Enough to fill about 7 tart shells. Can be made a day or two ahead of time and kept in the fridge (you'd need to rewarm it before filling tarts shells).

To make the tart shells:

 

Ingredients--

3 sticks and 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened (that's 1 and 1/2 cups, plus 1 Tbsp.)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 and 2/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2/3 cup cornstarch

1/3 cup and 1 Tbsp. semolina flour

1 and 1/2 tsp. coarse kosher salt

 

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. In the large bowl of your mixer, on medium speed, cream together the butter and sugar for two or three minutes, until it looks light and fluffy.

 

In a separate bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, semolina flour, and salt.  With your mixer on low speed, pour this into the butter mixture in two additions. Stop to scrape the bowl and beaters between additions. Beat just until obviously blended. Don't over-mix.

 

If you're using tart pans that are 3" to 4" in diameter, put a glob of dough about the size of a large walnut into each one. Press with your fingers so the dough is evenly spread on the bottom and all the way up the sides of each tart pan. Be sure to gently nudge the dough closely into the scallops so the design will be firmly impressed into the shells when they're unmolded after baking. Use a fork to prick the bottom of the shells. This will help keep them from puffing up while baking. (Also, I recommend placing pie weights in muffin papers, set in each tart pan over the dough. That's the best insurance to help them keep their shape as they bake.)Place all the filled pans on a baking sheet with sides. Bake for approximately 20 to 25 minutes, or just until lightly golden.When the shells are done, cool them on a rack for a few minutes before removing them from the pans to cool completely before filling them.

 

To make the lemon-lime filling:

 

Ingredients--

1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar

3 Tbsp. cornstarch

1/8 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. water

1 Tbsp. heavy cream

yolks from 3 large eggs (You can freeze those leftover whites--I do it all the time!)

1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice (strained to remove seeds and pulp)

2 Tbsp. fresh-squeezed lime juice (strained to remove seeds and pulp)

1 Tbsp. butter, softened

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

 

In a medium size saucepan, whisk the sugar, cornstarch, salt, water, and heavy cream. Cook the mixture over medium-high heat until it starts to thicken up and looks translucent (don’t worry, you'll know it when you see it).

While the sugar is cooking, in a medium size heat-proof bowl, whisk the egg yolks, lemon juice, and lime juice together. After the sugar mixture on the stove has thickened, as noted above, pour it slowly into the bowl of yolks and juice, whisking all the while (you don't want the hot sugar to cook the eggs, so just keep on whisking). When it's all mixed in, pour it all back into the saucepan and return that to the stove. Over medium heat, cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring continually the entire time, now with a wooden spoon (the mixture's going to get super hot, thus it's better to do this with a wooden spoon), until it thickens. Take the pan off the heat and immediately stir in the butter and vanilla.

Scoop or spoon the hot filling evenly into the baked, cooled tart shells. Let the filling cool down and then refrigerate the tarts. When the filled tarts are cold, top them with sweetened whipped cream before serving, if you like, and garnish each one with little wedges of lemon and lime, or perhaps a few raspberries or a nice big blackberry or strawberry.