Cocktail Party: Limoncello Meringue Tarts
Last week I experienced the worst possible mishap a food blogger can have in the kitchen; my oven broke. This means no more baking until I get my new kitchen. Yes, that is correct; although I am currently frustrated by the lack of oven I can put up with the inconvenience as it has accelerated the need for my new kitchen. Watch this space for the renovation journey.
Not deterred by the lack of oven I was still keen to participate in this months Sweet Adventures Blog Hop. Hosted by JJ from 84th&3rd, the theme for this hop is Cocktail Party. I love the idea of cocktail party food AKA cute, bite sized morsels. This inspired me to create cute, bite sized dessert, with a dash of alcohol thrown in to further enhance the cocktail theme.
Limoncello is one of my favourite tipples, added to lemon curd it makes for a great lemon meringue tart. Now I would normally make my own pastry but without a reliable oven I had to opt for a bought pastry. I always find bought pastry a little too thick, but with the amount of curd and meringue in the tarts it was actually a good ratio.
This is a great assembly line dessert. I made the lemon curd so I could use the Limoncello, but you could use ready made curd, then the only part you need to make is the Italian meringue.
Start by making the Italian meringue, then pipe some lemon curd into the tart cases and pipe the meringue on top. I finished the meringue with a mini blow torch. The browning of the meringue isn’t critical as the sugar syrup cooks the egg white when you make the meringue, so it’s perfectly safe to eat as is, but it does make it look nicer and give a slightly caramelised flavour.
Using Limoncello in the curd gives it a grown up kick and certainly makes this a great desert to serve up at a cocktail party. The following recipe makes enough to fill 24 tarts with some left over.
30ml lemon juice
125g caster sugar
80g unsalted butter
2-3 beaten eggs (around 125g)
Put the Limoncello, lemon juice, caster sugar and butter in a heat proof bowl and put over a pan of simmering water (do not allow the water to touch the bottom of the bowl). Stir until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved.
Gradually add the beaten egg to the mixture and continue to stir over the heat until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Do not allow the water to get too hot otherwise the egg will scramble. The curd should take about ten to twenty minutes to thicken.
Set aside to cool before filling your tart shells. I halved this recipe for Italian meringue and I still had plenty left over to make into meringue kisses.