The CamilleCooks world of baking falls into two categories: recipes using a mixer and recipes without a mixer. The “Lemon-Olive Oil Tart” from the March/ April 2019 issue of Cook’s Illustrated, showcases the latter, meaning it’s hands-on and quiet. No mixer needed here.

Lemon-Olive Oil Tart
Cook’s Illustrated,
March/April 2019

Serves 8

1½ cups (7½ oz.) all-purpose flour
5 Tbsp. (2¼ oz.) sugar
½ tsp. table salt
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. water

1 cup (7 oz.) sugar
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
¼ tsp. table salt
3 large eggs plus 3 large yolks
1 Tbsp. grated lemon zest plus ½ cup juice (3 lemons)
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the crust: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk flour, sugar, and salt together in bowl. Add oil and water and stir until uniform dough forms. Using your hands, crumble three-quarters of dough over bottom of 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom. Press dough to even thickness in bottom of pan. Crumble remaining dough and scatter evenly around edge of pan, then press crumbled dough into fluted sides of pan. Press dough to even thickness. Place pan on rimmed baking sheet and bake until crust is deep golden brown and firm to touch, 30 to 35 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking.

For the filling: About 5 minutes before crust is finished baking, whisk sugar, flour, and salt in medium saucepan until combined. Whisk in eggs and yolks until no streaks of egg remain. Whisk in lemon zest and juice. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly and scraping corners of saucepan, until mixture thickens slightly and registers 160 degrees, 5 to 8 minutes.

Off heat, whisk in oil until incorporated. Strain curd through fine-mesh strainer set over bowl. Pour curd into warm tart shell.

Bake until filling is set and barely jiggles when pan is shaken, 8 to 12 minutes. Let tart cool completely on wire rack, at least 2 hours. Remove outer metal ring of tart pan. Slide thin metal spatula between tart and pan bottom, then carefully slide tart onto serving platter. Cut tart into wedges, wiping knife clean between cuts if necessary, and serve. (Leftovers can be wrapped loosely in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 3 days.)

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I hand-pressed my crust into an 8-inch tart pan (rather than the recommended 9-inch). I definitely don’t “tart” enough in my kitchen. I baked the crust for 34:30, until “golden brown and firm.”

The filling needs to be whisked and warmed until thick and custardy. My cold eggs needed more than 8 minutes to get up to 160 degrees.

Why strain the lemon curd? It’s obvious once you do it: the zesty bits and pits of lemon are kept out of the custard. Don’t feel sad about leaving the zest behind in the strainer. Its job is done. Now, we think ahead to the smooth mouthfeel of the custard.

I baked the tart for 12 minutes, until the filling “barely jiggled.”

Enjoy the creamy filling in its pleasing cookie crust.

Let’s keep baking. Next time, I’ll tackle the “Chocolate-Pistachio Crumb Cake,” from the November 2018 issue of Saveur. Butter, butter, butter. Come back next week to see it…