Passing Judgement….

There are very few times when I get judgmental in life. Having dessert in a restaurant is one of them. Oh I don’t mean your mom and pop type place, I mean any place that actually has a pastry chef on staff. I went to lunch with my friend J the other day. She ordered a blackberry and lime tart(I went for the peach cobbler with spiced bourbon ice cream). When it came out it looked throw together as if we had come at the mad rush time and had not actually ordered it at 2 pm when us and six other people are in the restaurant. This bothered me immensely. You see, if we were at someone’s home, I probably would not have noticed. But this, this is a restaurant, one I frequent often. And I hold restaurants in a different standard. J, actually liked the taste of the tart very much, but food snob me just could really not get past the presentation. I mean the tart cream was smeared everywhere and down the sides all glopped up. I’m quite sure that my 3 year neighbor could have put it together better.
Coming home after lunch it was still bugging me. So when I saw that we were doing the lemon cream tart for Tuesday’s with Dorie, I knew that instead I wanted to try my hand at the blackberry and lime tart. There really aren’t that many modifications. I used lime juice instead of lemon and did not discard my zest. When the lime cream was done, I simply took out half of it and added 10 blackberries(fresh ones) to the blender and let them whirl with the remaining half of the lime cream. Simple as that.
Not being a huge tart/pie fan I must say that I really enjoyed this tart. Of course it could be the LARGE quantities of butter that is used that won me over. I would definitely make this again, as well as serve it to others.
Thanks to Mary of Starting From Scratch for this great pick! See all the other TWD participants here.

The Most Extraordinary Blackberry and Lime Tart

For the crust
1 ¼  cups all purpose flour
¼ cup almond flour
½ cup confectioners’ sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick + 1 tbsp unsalted butter, very cold, cut into pieces
1 egg yolk, lightly whisked

To make the crust, put the flours, icing sugar and salt in a food processor and pulse to combine.
Add the butter and pulse until the mixture is coarse, around the size of oatmeal and/or peas.
Add the egg yolk a little at a time, pulsing after each addition and then processing in 10-second pulses once the whole egg has been added until the dough forms clumps.
Turn the dough onto a flat work surface and lightly knead the dough until all dry ingredients are just incorporated.
Butter a 9 inch fluted removable-bottom tart pan. I used smaller tart pans of various sizes.
Press the dough into the pan evenly. Freeze for about an hour.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Butter the shiny side of a piece of aluminum foil and fit it tightly against the crust.
Bake for 25 minutes. 15 minutes for the smaller ones.
Carefully remove the foil, and press the dough down gently if it has puffed using the back of a spoon.
Return it to the oven for another 8 minutes, or until it is beautifully golden brown.

For the lime cream:
1 cup sugar
Grated zest of 4 limes
4 eggs
¾ cup lime juice (4 limes)
2 sticks + 5 tbsp (10.5 oz) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into pieces
For the cream:

Before you start the lime cream, have a candy thermometer, a strainer and a blender at hand.
Simmer a little water in a saucepan.
Put the sugar and lime zest in a large heatproof bowl.
Off the heat, rub the mixture together with your fingers until the sugar is moist, grainy and aromatic.
Whisk in the eggs and then the lime juice.
Set the bowl over the pan of water and whisk continuously until it reaches 180°F
As it gets close to temperature it will start to thicken. This can take up to 10 minutes, so be patient!
Remove the cream from the heat and strain it into the blender.
Discard any solids. Let the cream stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes, or until it cools to 140°F.
Turn the blender(or food processor)on high, and add the butter a few pieces at a time.
Scrape down the sides to incorporate the butter.
Keep the machine on for 3-5 minutes once the butter is in to ensure a perfect lime cream
Pour into an air-tight container and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (it will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days).


When you are ready to assemble the tart, whisk the cream to loosen it and spoon it into the tart shell.
Serve the tart or refrigerate as needed.

Adapted from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan.


  1. You know what got me feeling good about your presentation: that perfect dollop of whipped cream with the blackberry on top…I just want to reach for it!! That cream is on rotation at our house along with dulce de leche and lemon curd…all that buttah makes my skin glow like Ina :)
    Beautiful job!

  2. Beautiful, beautiful photos!!!

  3. WOW. WOW. WOW.

    I wish I’d thought of doing lime and blackberry. Don’t get me wrong, we loved the lemon, but WOW. I can just imagine how delicious it must be with blackberry and lime. Mmmm…..

  4. brilliant! looks really pretty as well!

  5. Lime and Blackberries, YUM! Your tart looks great!

  6. You’ve been given an “Excellent Blog Award”. See Whisk: a food blog for more information. Congratulations!


  7. I absolutely agree with your “judgementalism.” A restaurant like you’re describing should never let an obviously sloppy plate leave the kitchen at any time. Funny thing, during the dinner rush there may be a manager or some such person making sure everything is tip top, whereas during an afternoon lull, some unsupervised prep person who is low on the totem poll and really clueless was left with the duty of plating your dessert. I have strong feelings about this stuff from working in restaurants for years. Anyway, I want the peach cobbler with spiced bourbon ice cream…really.

  8. Yummy as usual! Love the color combo!

  9. That is a great combination! I am glad for me that your friend and you had a mediocre experience because it inspired you to make this. Sorry about that for the two of you though : (

  10. These are so beautiful! I love the colors and the flavors sound amazing. I have to say~ I think Dorie would be AMAZINGLY proud…

  11. These tarts are absolutely beautiful – they make for a great photograph!

  12. Love the two-tone effect!

    Go Flames!!!

  13. Great idea!

  14. How pretty! The colors are gorgeous!

    I agree with you wholeheartedly… I eat with my eyes first.

  15. OK, I know it has been said 64 times before me, but this is beautiful, as are all your other posts. Thank you so much for sharing. It is just scrumptious looking!!


  16. i would love to try your version – yum! :)

    i still have no idea why i couldn’t get mine up to temp? glass bowl? electric stove? i have no idea. i’m just glad i didn’t ruin the recipe!

  17. I think it’s safe to say that anything you make would be as good as if not better than anything a restaurant could provide. Seriously, Peabody – ya think?! :)

  18. I certainly think a restaurant with pastry chef and pricy desserts should be something more visual that most down home desserts. On the other hand yours always seem to be more beautiful than many restaurant desserts I’ve seen.
    This is such fun with the two colors! and the crust seems flawlessly gorgeous!!
    But you always rock me Peabody.

  19. Beautiful tart and gorgeous pictures!

    Rustic is one thing, and messy is another.

  20. Yum! First – I am a huge fan of blackberries, so this got my attention immediately! Second, its soo cute!

    I am guilty – totally judgemental when out. I think it comes from wanting to be the one in the kitchen making the desserts! :)

  21. Oh – that looks lovely!
    And… I totally know what you mean about judgment at restaurants. I am just as guilty!

  22. gee-wiz…….. this is gorgeous!

  23. omg!


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