Lemon Tart with Gingersnap Crust


Since my new found love for citrus desserts I have been awaiting an occasion for an encore. I know I bake occasionally a lot, but I still love the idea of having a special occasion dessert. Sometimes a meal just screams one of my restaurant-worthy dessert. Even after virtually spending all day up to my eyeballs in butter with my coq au vin adventure, I couldn’t sit down until I had  a french bistro-inspired dessert to go along with it.


Backing up to the eyeballs in butter comment, I had found myself in quite  a rare situation; I was almost out of butter! Any good dessert screams saturated fat, but this one simply could not, no matter how hard it tried. I had enough butter for the filling (the lemony curd-like super star) but not enough to even think of making a paté sablé-basically a shortbread crust.


I scavenged my cupboards, desperately searching for something to cradle my lemon filling; don’t laugh, this was serious business. After realizing for the third time there really wasn’t any butter hiding anywhere, I came across some gingersnaps, buried in the pantry. Melted with a little margarine (shhhh don’t tell anyone!!) I had a snappy and totally acceptable crust. After such a rich meal -despite not strategizing as well as I could have-this luscious, almost cheek-puckeringly tart er…tart was a perfect light and creamy finish to the meal.

Lemon Tart with Gingersnap Crust

Filling from Smitten Kitchen Cookbook


  • 1 1/2 cups gingersnap cookies, about 18
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine


  1. Preheat oven to 370˚.
  2. In a food processor, pulse cookies until they turn into a fine crumb. Add melted butter and pulse until combined.
  3. Pat into 9″ pie plate or removable bottom tart shell.
  4. Bake for 20-35 minutes until slightly dark. Set aside until ready to use.


  • 1 lemon
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  1. Lower oven temperature to 350˚
  2. Slice lemon into rings + discard any seeds. Place into food processor.
  3. Add sugar + puree until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add butter + blend until smooth once again, scraping sides with a spatula.
  5. Add egg, corn starch + salt until evenly combined.
  6. Pour into pre baked crust, baking for 30 minutes, until filling is set on the outside but still a bit jiggly in the middle.
  7. Let cool completely, slice into wedges.

**My crust was VERY soggy, I’m still posting this recipe though because I forgot the butter in the filling (after it baking for 5 minutes) and had to pour it out of the crust, into the blender and back into the crust to continue to cook. I’m guessing this mishap was responsible for my mushy crust.


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