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Lemon Tart with Cornmeal Crust

Caramelizing the top of the tart by heating it with a mini torch (or under the broiler) gives it a crisp sugar crust. This step is optional but makes the dessert even more impressive.

  • Yield: Makes 1 nine-inch tart

Source: Martha Stewart Weddings, Fall 2002


  • 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4 to 6 lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 to 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons creme fraiche or sour cream
  • 6 large eggs
  • Cornmeal Tart Shell, in the tart pan


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Make the filling: In a medium bowl, whisk together lemon juice, zest, and 3/4 cup sugar. Whisk in all the creme fraiche or sour cream until combined; whisk in eggs until blended. Using a large spoon, skim foam from surface. Set the tart pan on a baking sheet; pour filling into tart shell.
  2. Bake until filling is just set, 25 to 30 minutes (do not let it brown). Transfer tart pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. If desired, just before serving, sift remaining 2 to 3 tablespoons sugar evenly over top of tart. Cover crust with removable ring; caramelize sugar with a small blowtorch or place under the broiler for several seconds, just until browned.

Cook's Notes

The lemon tart can be baked up to 12 hours ahead; cover, and keep at room temperature. If you wish, caramelize the top with a kitchen blowtorch or by placing the tart under the broiler.

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