Tarte au citron

I got really obsessed with making the perfect lemon tart some years ago; having found myself with a very short commute, I filled my spare time with baking. My husband informed me that it wasn’t normal to make so many lemon tarts. He said there probably were people that made as many but he reckoned that was because they made them in a work capacity. I churned out many a lemon tart, demanding that my colleagues rank all the lemon tarts I’d made them in order of preference. They looked at me blankly, randomly suggesting numbers to get me to talk about something else.

A proper French lemon tart is baked in the oven for a long time at a low heat. If you want a quicker option, I’ve included a stove top filling that’s much quicker to make and a vegan option.

To start with, you’ll need a blind-baked pastry case, lined with melted white chocolate. Pre-heat your oven to 130C.

4 tablespoons egg replacer

220g caster sugar

3 lemons (or 6 tablespoons of lemon juice)

140ml double cream

1. Whisk the egg replacer with eight tablespoons of water.

2. Zest and juice the three lemons before adding to the egg replacer.

3. Add the sugar and cream to the mixture and whisk until evenly mixed.

4. Put the pastry case onto a baking tray and pour the mix into the pastry case. Bake at 130C for an hour to 90 minutes. The filling should be wobbly like a jelly and no longer a liquid.

5. Leave to cool a little before putting it in the fridge overnight to set. Dust with icing sugar and serve with a drizzle of cream or a dollop of creme fraiche.

Lemon Tart

You can alternatively decorate it with chopped fruit – I used strawberries, raspberries, pomegranate seeds, a few black grapes and two passion fruit for the picture at the

If you don’t have any egg replacer, you can substitute it for 4 tbsp of corn flour, whisked with 8 tablespoons of water. It will turn out differently, but will still be a lemon tart nonetheless. Alternatively, just use the quick recipe below.

Quick Lemon Tart

For the quick version, you’ll need: 600ml double cream, 150g sugar, and the juice and zest of two lemons in addition to the pastry case.

Bring the cream to the boil over a low heat while you zest and juice the lemons. Turn off the heat and add the sugar and lemon juice. Pour into the pastry case and leave to set overnight in the fridge.

Vegan Lemon Tart

This is essentially a lemon curd, if you would like to put it in a jar to keep in the fridge rather than filling a tart with it.

190g sugar

190ml water

50g cornstarch

25g vegan margarine

1 tsp lemon zest

65ml lemon juice

  1. Mix the sugar, water and cornstarch in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to the boil over a low heat, stirring as you go.
  2. Turn off the heat and add the margarine, lemon juice and zest. Stir until smooth.
  3. Pour into a pastry case and allow to set in the fridge overnight.