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Lime-Pistachio Tart

Creamy meets crunchy when a layer of velvety lime-flavored mascarpone-ricotta mousse and tart lime curd come together in a rustic pistachio shell. It may look like a cheesecake, but it is lighter and airier -- a fitting finale to a spring get-together. Indeed, the green zest garnish lends itself quite nicely to a Saint Patrick's Day meal.

  • Servings: 12
Lime-Pistachio Tart

Photography: Yunhee Kim

Source: Martha Stewart Living, March Spring 2007

Ingredients

For the Dough

  • 1 cup shelled raw unsalted pistachios, half coarsely ground and half finely ground
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest (about 2 limes)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 large egg yolk plus 1 large egg

For the Filling

  • 1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 20 large egg yolks plus 2 large eggs
  • 6 tablespoons finely grated lime zest, plus more for garnish, plus 2 cups fresh lime juice (about 12 limes)
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 3/4 cups mascarpone cheese

Directions

  1. Make the dough: Whisk together nuts, flour, sugar, salt, and lime zest in a large bowl. Using your fingertips, work in butter until the largest pieces are the size of peas; make a well in center. Whisk yolk and egg in a small bowl, and pour into well. Gradually draw flour mixture into center, kneading until combined. Shape dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate overnight (up to 3 days).

  2. Start the filling: Place ricotta in a sieve lined with cheesecloth, and set over a bowl. Cover, and refrigerate overnight.

  3. Prepare an ice-water bath; set aside. Whisk sugar, yolks, and eggs in a large heatproof bowl. Whisk in lime zest and juice. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water. Cook, whisking occasionally, until thick, about 30 minutes.

  4. Remove from heat. Add butter, a few pieces at a time, whisking until smooth after each addition. Pour through a fine sieve into a bowl set in ice-water bath. Place plastic wrap directly on surface of lime curd. Let cool. Refrigerate overnight (up to 3 days).

  5. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Let dough come to room temperature; roll out on a lightly floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Fit dough into a 10-by-3-inch springform pan, pressing and patching so that dough reaches 2 inches up sides of pan. Line with parchment; fill with pie weights or dried beans. Chill in freezer 15 minutes.

  6. Bake crust 30 minutes. Remove pie weights and parchment. Bake until edge of crust is golden brown and inside is pale golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Let cool slightly on a wire rack. Remove sides from pan; and transfer crust to rack to cool completely.

  7. Assemble tart: Spread 2 1/2 cups lime curd over crust. Put ricotta and mascarpone into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on high speed until thick, about 5 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Beat in remaining lime curd. Raise speed to high, and beat 3 minutes. Pour over lime curd in crust, spreading evenly with an offset spatula; gently shake to remove any air bubbles. Refrigerate, uncovered, overnight. Garnish with zest before serving.

Reviews (8)

  • Jennifer Starr 31 Aug, 2013

    I just finished this and can't wait to serve it tomorrow-stole a test bite and it's delicious. Not sure what the other reviewers were questioning or complaining about. The recipe requires some planning, but the directions and ingredients are very clear. Just follow the directions and this will come out great. In case anyone reviews those older comments, it definitely is 20 yolks and half of the egg mixture goes into the cheese mixture, so yes, the ricotta has eggs - eleven yolks plus one whole.

  • dnteatylwsno 22 Sep, 2010

    This recipe should be given in three steps. The crust, the curd filling and the ricotta/mascarpone filling. With ingredients and steps for each. From experience (I'm 100% Italian) the ricotta NEEDS eggs to hold together when baking *see Penelope?

  • Cathi65 4 May, 2010

    +I+just+did+not+have+good+luck+with+this+recipe.++The+lime+curd+never+thickened...and+this+was+alot+of+steps....I+may+give+it+one+more+shot+later...but+who+knows...after+sperarating+20+eggs...+juicing+12+limes+and+then+rinding+them.....I+need+assured+success+for+that+kind+of+work.

  • njr 19 Mar, 2010

    So which is it??!! 20 (twenty) egg yolks, or 2 (two)?? BIG difference...
    Nj

  • njr 19 Mar, 2010

    So which is it??!! 20 (twenty) egg yolks, or 2 (two)?? BIG difference...
    Nj

  • AmyRR 25 Jan, 2010

    There are issues with this recipe the amount of eggs and lime juice will give you a tart portion that fills almost the entire crust not just a small portion as shown in the picture. I spent a ton of money on the ingredients only to have to throw the whole thing out. martha you should look at this reipe as its not protioned properly. I would says its 2 egg yolks and 2 Tbsp of lime juice to make that small amount of curd.

  • CatherineCullen 16 Mar, 2009

    How do you know which sugar and which eggs to use for which part of the recipe?

  • PenelopeRB 15 Mar, 2008

    Delicious! Full of tart goodness. I started making this on a Tuesday (the dough), Wednesday (the lime curd, and strained the ricotta) and assembled on Thursday for serving Friday evening. Give dough ample time to come up to room temperature. Nice crust texture; a good counterpoint to the lime-y tartness of the fillings, but the pistachio flavor was a bit overpowered. That was ok, as the texture and color were good. Keep chilled after serving, as it "melted" a bit when sitting out at the party.

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