Marcus Whitman Hotel's Lemon Tarts

Lovely lemon tarts have the bright tart flavor of lemon balanced with just the right amount of sweetness.

Servings: 6–12

Cook Time: 1 1/4 hours

Pair With: A fragrant Viognier

Source: Recipe and photo courtesy the Marc at the Marcus Whitman Hotel.


Ingredients For the Sweet Tart Dough:

6 ounces butter, softened

5 ounces granulated sugar

2 ounces eggs

1 tablespoon water

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

13 ounces all-purpose flour

pinch salt
vegetable spray for greasing pans

Ingredients For the Lemon Curd:

4 tablespoons butter

7 large egg yolks

2 large eggs

1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2/3 cups fresh lemon juice (this equals about 4 lemons)*

1/4 cup fresh grated lemon zest (from about 4 lemons)*

3 tablespoons heavy cream

pinch of salt
Optional: fresh berries for topping

*Note—It is especially important to use fresh lemon juice and zest, store bought lemon juice does not yield as strong of a lemon flavor.


Directions For the Sweet Tart Dough:

Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Combine eggs, water and vanilla in a separate bowl. Slowly add into the butter/sugar mixture until combined, mixing well between additions. Combine flour and salt in a separate bowl. Gradually add to butter/sugar mixture. Mix until combined. Wrap up and let chill for at least 30 minutes.

Roll out to 1/4" thick and press into sprayed (vegetable spray) tartlet pans. Prick all over with a fork and blind bake them so they keep their shape. Chef Mandi Konen lines each tart shell with plastic wrap and fills them with lentils before baking them, but you can use beans, rice, baking weights, etc. Bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove plastic wrap and weights and bake for an additional 2-3 minutes. Let cool.

Fill with lemon curd and garnish with fresh fruit.

Directions For the Lemon Curd:

Note: use nonreactive bowls and utensils in this recipe, otherwise your curd will taste like metal. Use stainless steel, glass, or plastic instead of copper, cast iron or aluminum.

Whisk egg yolks, eggs, and sugar together until combined, then whisk in lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and butter. Cook over medium low heat, stirring constantly until thickens and reaches 170 degrees (about 5 minutes). Strain immediately and stir in cream. This can be made in advance and wrapped tightly with plastic wrap and stored for a week.

Visit our Wine Store to find a wine to pair with this recipe.

Chef's Notes:

Recipe from Marcus Whitman Hotel & Conference Center Pastry Chef Mandi Konen.

Editor's Note: Professional chefs use weight rather than volume for flour and other dry ingredients, and for eggs, since the measurements are more precise.

Recipe Courtesy Of

Marcus Whitman Hotel & Conference Center

Marcus Whitman Hotel & Conference Center is a storied landmark anchoring historic downtown Walla Walla.