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This recipe is classed as easy

Rating 3.33 / 5 (436 votes)

Prep time:
30 min
Cook time:
50 min

This zesty lemon tart from Rachel Allen contrasts rich buttery pastry with a zingy filling


1. For the pastry: Put the flour, butter and a pinch of salt in a food processor and process briefly.

2. Add half the beaten egg and continue to process. (You might add a little more egg, but not too much as the mixture should be just moist enough to come together.) If making the pastry by hand, rub the butter into the flour until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs then, using your hands, add just enough egg to bring it together.

3. With your hands, flatten out the ball of dough until it is about 2cm thick, then wrap it in cling film or place it in a plastic bag and leave in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or, if you are pushed for time, in the freezer for 10–15 minutes, before using.

4. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.

5. Line a 23cm tart tin with the shortcrust pastry and cover the base with baking parchment. Fill the tin with baking beans and bake blind for 10-15 minutes. Remove the beans and parchment for the last five minutes of baking for a golden crust.

5. For the filling: Place the eggs, lemon zest and sugar in a bowl and whisk for a couple of minutes until the egg is all broken up.

6. Add the cream, orange and lemon juice. Mix well, skimming off any froth from the top of the mixture. Carefully pour the filling into the cooked pastry case.

7. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C/gas 3 and bake the tart for 30-35 minutes or until the filling has just set in the centre – it should only wobble very slightly when you take it out of the oven.

8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 15 minutes before removing the tart from the tin and transferring to a plate or cake stand. When it is cool, dredge a little icing sugar over the top and cut into slices to serve.

Cook's tip: Rachel suggests rolling out the pastry between two sheets of clingfilm to help keep it together, then removing the top layer of film and flipping it into the tin. She also keeps the top layer of clingfilm in whilst the pastry shell is baking blind.

Adapted from Rachel Allen, Bake (Collins)

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Latest Comment


tried it once before after watching the show on tv. Turned out amazing. LOVE her shows. Makes baking undaunting,

jillT16374 jillT16374  Posted 13 Nov 2012 12:00 PM

i tried this recipe and love the outcome...

hanaH20590 hanaH20590  Posted 09 Sep 2011 9:34 AM

Hello Jan. 180C would be about 350F for you...as for the measurements, have you tried using an online converter? This one is quite good: [link]

Charlotte - Good Food Charlotte - Good Food  Posted 01 Sep 2011 11:27 AM

I'm having a very difficult time converting your measurments and oven temperature to what we use in the USA. Could you please help me!

JanW50520 JanW50520 Posted 01 Sep 2011 12:06 AM

I'm having a hard time converting the amount of ingredients to cups, ounces, etc. that I'm familiar with in the united states. I would also like the temperature conversion for baking in the oven.

JanW50520 JanW50520 Posted 01 Sep 2011 12:02 AM

Really great flavour, smooth creamy zingy filling, base just a bit soggy - will brush pastry with egg wash to seal next time. I used a larger tin, so added an extra egg & a little more cream & sugar. Will be making again.

Drewdon Drewdon Posted 17 Jun 2011 8:48 AM

Hi farnoushH60867. Another tip to prevent the pastry from shrinking. Line your flan dish as normal and place it in the fridge for 30mins before baking blind. Hope this helps

MargaretN2417 MargaretN2417 Posted 09 May 2011 10:17 AM

Hi farnoushH60867, you should use medium sized oranges and lemons, for the pastry, it is normal for it to shrink a little, but it shouldn't shink too much. They may be because kneaded the pastry a little too much, or because you didn't rest it for long enough. To get a really nice, light and crisp shortcrust pastry it is best to knead it just long enough for the pastry to come together into a smoothish lump. Then, as Rachel suggests, you should leave it to rest.

nicolaJ92714, as Rachel says, rolling the pastry out between two sheets of clingfilm is a great way to ensure it stays together well. It also stops the pastry from sticking to your rolling pin or surfaces. When it comes to placing the pastry in the tin, keeping it on the bottom sheet of clingfilm and simply flipping the whole thing over can be a good way to stop the pastry from falling apart. I hope that helps.

Celia Good Food Celia Good Food Posted 24 Jan 2011 11:35 AM

i cant quite understand the cook tip suggestions....sometimes the purpose or translation is lost

nicolaJ92714 nicolaJ92714 Posted 23 Jan 2011 11:39 AM

I love every recipe from Rachel. I just have two questions if anyone can hep me. first I was not sure about the exact amount of the juice. it can be different based on the size of the lemon and orange. second, when I baked the pastry, it shrinked. is that OK? is there anyway to avoid it?

farnoushH60867 farnoushH60867 Posted 13 Dec 2010 1:56 AM

Hi made this today with my girls we had fun and the tart went down a treat.My girls have ask to make it again for bone fire night.

DaineM54411 DaineM54411 Posted 04 Nov 2010 10:54 PM

this is a lovely zesty tart

Kerry-Cashman Kerry-Cashman Posted 14 Oct 2010 1:35 PM

i have to cook this lovly tart each weak they took what was left home wow what a complement i have your backing book do you \have another book with tart reciepeas

molly23 molly23 Posted 24 Apr 2010 7:37 AM

it is so woderful the problem was i have been all over the town and i cannot finde a fluted edge if you can help me i love Rachels baking bring it on darling i would love to learn to cook sincerly Belinda

molly23 molly23 Posted 07 Apr 2010 12:45 PM

the recipe is the same but without the cream and it has 120g sugar hope this helps

glo123 glo123 Posted 21 Jul 2009 7:55 AM

i found the cling film melted when i did it i now use greaseproof or baking parchment and any dried peas will do. i used a whole pack then when cold i put them in a tupperware dish and use again and again.

glo123 glo123 Posted 21 Jul 2009 7:39 AM

i made this tart just after seeing the programme and it was a hit ive made it since with more lemon and added extra orange juice and its very yummy

glo123 glo123 Posted 21 Jul 2009 7:35 AM

where can i get baking beans? can i just use normal beans from the dry food section of the supermarket? and does the type of beans matter?

sangeeta5312 sangeeta5312 Posted 03 Jul 2009 7:36 PM

Delicious!!!Thank you so much!!

Anonymous Anonymous Posted 25 Jun 2009 2:42 PM

Sublime. Easy and so yummy - best tart ever!

St Cezaire St Cezaire Posted 24 Jun 2009 4:35 AM

Sublime. I have made lemon tart in a commercial kitchen before and it was never as good as this recipe. Easy and so yummy!

Anonymous Anonymous Posted 24 Jun 2009 4:30 AM

Top draw Ms Allen. My 11 year old son made it for dinner today, next time I would put use 2 lemons instead of 3, a little too tart for my taste. but that is just a matter of taste. We all really enjoyed it!

PatC32989 PatC32989 Posted 07 Jun 2009 9:01 PM

I have just followed this recipe to the T and it has not worked? the blind baked tart was fine, however the mixture just seeped throught the pastry onto a tray below, so you can imagain how impressed I am!

Pudgirl Pudgirl Posted 01 Mar 2009 3:36 PM

Thanks for your comments. The recipe has now been updated and is in line with the recipe baked on the show.

Rachel S - UKTV Rachel S - UKTV Posted 29 Oct 2008 5:05 PM

I havn't made this before. Is there a danger that it can turn out like an eggy custard ?

anita30 anita30 Posted 28 Oct 2008 5:01 PM

Be warned some cling film does melt. I tried it and used the new Glad cling film and unfortunately it melted. If anyone can give the name of clingfilm that does not melt I would appreciate it.

JuneT28214 JuneT28214 Posted 25 Oct 2008 12:20 PM

I also wanted the original recipe, also not sure about the cling film. Would be nice to know when chefs make a dish if is ok to freeze.

LinF5240 LinF5240 Posted 19 Oct 2008 8:47 AM

Yes, I also wanted the original recipe, and also reassurance that the cling film will not melt.

SueR20980 SueR20980 Posted 16 Oct 2008 9:37 AM

I would also like the recipe that appeared on the TV.

MelBG MelBG Posted 14 Oct 2008 4:25 PM

I really wanted the recipe shown on the programme. This is nothing like. To make it worse this recipe is incorrect anyway.

BeverleyP35817 BeverleyP35817 Posted 11 Oct 2008 12:12 AM

Can we have the recipe that was on the programme - please

brianG42917 brianG42917 Posted 09 Oct 2008 7:11 PM

Will the cling film definately not melt in the oven?

delia 3 delia 3 Posted 07 Oct 2008 9:32 PM

This is not the recipe that Rachel used on her TV program. It was just a lemon tart and looked fantastic.

stibbs stibbs Posted 07 Oct 2008 4:21 PM

what orange juice, there is none in the ingredients list?

Scalywitch Scalywitch Posted 06 Oct 2008 11:06 AM