Dug out from the depths of the family recipe book, the flavor of this tart is distinct and pure, unadulterated almond. However, the lemon in the filling offers a wonderful splash of tartness, a burst of sunshine that nods to spring. If you can get your hands on some early season strawberries, that's my topping of choice. If not, candied lemon slices or a simple dusting of confectioner's sugar would be lovely. —The Black Wicks
What You'll Need
unsalted butter, chilled & cut into 1/2 inch pieces
whole almonds, toasted
grated lemon zest
In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the flour, powdered sugar, almond extract and salt until combined. Add the chilled butter and pulse until the size of peas. Drizzle in the ice water 1 Tb at a time, pulsing until a moist, crumb-like dough forms. Do not mix until a ball forms. The dough will be fine and powdery, but clump together when pressed.
Press the dough firmly into a 10 or 11-inch tart pan and chill in the freezer until set, at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line the (now) frozen crust with parchment and fill with beans or pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes, remove beans, and return to the oven for 8 minutes longer. Remove crust from the oven, set aside to cool, and reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees.
In the food processor, blend together the toasted almonds, almond paste, and sugar until smooth. Add the eggs, heavy cream, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Blend until fully combined.
Pour tart filling into the cooled crust and bake at 350 until set, about 35-40 minutes. If the crust edges begin to over-brown before the filling is set, cover lightly with aluminum foil. When done, cool the tart in the pan at room temperature and then refrigerate until ready to serve. Remove the tart from the fridge 30 minutes prior to serving for ease in slicing.
Optional: Top with early season strawberries. Brush the strawberries lightly with simple syrup to glaze.