April 20, 2008

don't try this at home...

...or anywhere, for that matter.


I was only about two minutes into making what I had hoped to be a luscious lemon dessert when I realized that things were definitely not going to work out as planned.

Nevertheless, I persisted...

...and should've stopped while I was ahead.


Wait. I was never ahead.

The problem arose from my decision to use my brand-spankin'-new tartlet tins rather than make the tried and true lemon bars. Let it be known that I'm a tartlet novice, but they always look so elegant and pretty and delicious that I had to give them a shot. Boy, I've got a lot to learn.

I was honestly extremely surprised when I was able to get the tarts out of the tins. Surprised and ecstatic. There was a silver lining in all this--even though they're a bit of an eyesore, they actually tasted good. The best part, and bear in mind that this is coming from someone who doesn't particularly care for lemony things, was clearly the crust. My kitchen smelled like butter all day.

It's a great recipe, and next time I'll just stick with bars. File this one under "bad ideas."


Potentially Luscious Lemon Tarts
(from alpineberry--go visit)
(makes 24 hideous tartlets or fills an 8-inch square pan)

Crust:
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces

Filling:
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/4 cup lemon juice

Here's what I did, but I would advise against it:

Preheat oven to 350F. Generously butter the tiny tartlet tins.

To make crust:
Combine flour, powdered sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Add butter and pulse until the mixture is pebbly. Or, if you're a tightwad like me, go ahead and break out ye olde pastry cutter and go to town.


Press evenly into the bottom and up the sides of your prepared tins. Bake until lightly golden, about 18-20 minutes. Set aside.

To make filling:
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, flour, and salt. Whisk in lemon zest and juice until well combined. Fill the tart crusts almost to the top--that filling's not going anywhere. Bake until filling is just set, about 15 to 18 minutes. Cool completely before digging out of the evil tins. Dust with powdered sugar to mask some of the ugliness.

26 comments:

KJ said...

I'm sorry your tartelets didn't turn out the way you wanted. But I think they look good. And so long as they tasted great. It's a win in my book.

biscuitpusher said...

I am SO familiar with that Homer Simpson feeling. But at least they tasted good despite the head thump.

I also gave you the Blogging with a Purpose Award. :)

Elle said...

hmmm...they still look good to me, and I sure as heck wouldn't turn one away. Or two. :)

lcsa99 said...

Practice makes perfect. Now you know what doesn't work, you can tweak it till it's perfect

noble pig said...

I am cracking up at your line, "makes 24 hideous tartlets" Oh the culinary disasters we face. But I think they look fine. If they were in front of me...I'd eat them.

toontz said...

Mmmm...I really didn’t see a problem with these; lemon, sugar, butter-how can you go wrong?
It reminded me of a disaster I had not 2 weeks ago with a lacy oatmeal cookie. I tried to mold them into cup shapes to hold sherbet. They were extremely fragile...so fragile that when I placed them on the racks to cool, they fell apart! I was so disgusted, I just left them there in their glory. Little by little, the family came by (like mice?) and nibbled their way through the crumbs. As long as it gets eaten, I guess it is not such a disaster, right? :)

RecipeGirl said...

I love it. I make similar decisions, thinking that I'm such the knowledgeable baker (not!) I'm glad they were still yummy.

Krysta said...

Who cares? As long as they tasted good.

Pixie said...

lol you do make me laugh Grace; I wasn't sure about using a different pan than suggested recipe for my lemon cake- fortunately, it worked. I agree about masking it with a bit of sugar or icing or anything! I'm glad they still tasted wonderful.

Melanie said...

Mmm...they still look delicious, I say. I love lemon bars!!

Emiline said...

I think they look pretty darn good. I like the tarts.
And I love lemon bars...sometime I crave them. I crave Lemon Coolers, too.

Kevin said...

I haven't had too much luck with tarts either. They sound really good though. I really like lemon desserts.

Cookie baker Lynn said...

I hope you and your tart pans get to be good friends. The lemon tarts look delicious, despite not being perfect.

Steph said...

They still look delicious, and I could probably devour each and every one myself! Great blog!

White On Rice Couple said...

I never would have known that you struggled so much with these new tins! They still look so beautiful!
Tins like these scare me, probably because I've still a very novice baker!

dobetter said...

Kudos to you for trying something new! Those tart pans are wonderful, I can see why you would want to give them a try.

Rosie said...

I would never have known they look excellent to me!! I love lemon tartelets, I can just taste that lemony flavour from here - drool -drool.

Rosie x

Jeff said...

I must be blind because they look awesome from here.

LyB said...

Mmmmm, lemon...

Sandy said...

You're making my mouth water! Do you eat everything you bake? :)

Neen said...

Where's the problem, they look GREAT!

Ann said...

Lemon. And butter. In individual adorable servings. What was the problem again?

Kim said...

Grace your tarts look absolutely lovely. The lemon looks gooey and buttery. In fact since I am an almost fellow Southerner why don't you ship those down to my neck of the woods. I will be happy to take them off your hands.

Jade said...

I had a lemon experience last week myself :) I think yours look good though!!!

Mrs. L said...

They tasted good? Well, they look fine to me so what's the problem :) Seriously, sometimes who cares about the look, it's the taste that matters.

kellypea said...

I love posts like this. You've inspired me to suck it up and do one of my own, because in the long run, it's about how the food tastes and those cute little lemon "bar-lettes" look very tasty. I think the reason I don't make lemon bars is because I'd eat every single one. A person can only have so much control. You know?