I channeled my inner Julia Child, and experimented with a savory-sweet combination– give it a shot, you might just love it.
I was a little hesitant at first, but with a few adjustments, the recipe came together nicely. The clove-like, sweet flavor of the basil nicely contrasts the tartness of the lime, which, me fall in love with the dessert more after each bite.
Lime Basil Tart – recipe adapted from Juila Child
[yields ~2 cups of lime basil mouselline curd, enough for ~ 10-5" tarts]
(Lime Basil Mouselline Curd)
- 4 egg yolks
- 3 tbsp butter (45 gr)
- zest, and juice of 2 limes (50 gr juice, 2 gr zest)
- 5 basil leaves, chiffonade (5 gr)
- 1/4 cup sugar (55 gr)
- 1 cup 35% cream; cold(225 gr)
- 1 tbsp sugar (15 gr)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla (1 gr)
1. Prepare an ice-water bath, and set aside. In a heat proof (stainless steel, or glass) bowl, whisk together egg yolks, lime juice, lime zest, butter and sugar. Place over a double-boiler, and whisk gently until the mixture thickens (approx. 10 min).
2. Remove bowl from the double boiler, and place in the ice-water bath for 30 seconds. Whisk until cool to touch. Fold in the basil.
* Chiffonade is a cutting technique where herbs (or other leafy vegetables) are cut into thin strips, or ‘ribbons’. To simplest way to accomplish this, is to stack your herb (basil in this case) leaves, tightly rolling them together, and slice with a sharp knife.
3. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd, and refrigerate until completely cold. The reason why you place the plastic wrap directly on the surface is to prevent a skin from forming on the curd– if a skin develops, you’ll have an uneven texture.
4. While you’re curd is cooling, you can prepare the tart shells. This recipe calls for fully baked shells, because the curd is already cooked, and doesn’t need to return to the oven. Instructions and recipe for tart shell dough can be found here — allow the shells to fully cool down before filling them.
5. Whisk, or beat whip cream and sugar until semi-firm peaks until semi-hard peaks form. To get a better volume from your cream, whisk in a cold stainless steel bowl; generally, aged whip cream builds better volume.
6. Fold the whip cream into the chilled curd until smooth. Be careful not to over mix, or else you’ll deflate the whip cream, and lose the mouselline texture.
7. Pipe the mouselline curd into the shells, and garnish. Refrigerate for ~30 minutes before serving. The tarts need to be stored in the fridge, and will hold for 2 days in an airtight container.
This picture is my favorite of the lot because it made me feel giant… and everything mini is just that much more awesome.