I bought some frozen Dragon Fruit smoothie packs with the intention of making smoothies. After carefully inspecting my organic smoothie pack's ingredients, which listed; Organic Dragon Fruit Pulp and Seeds, I immediately shifted my plan. I had some beautiful Meyer Lemons in my citrus basket on my counter, which constantly reminds me to use them. The idea was born, a curd filled tart with a swiss meringue topping. It's is sweet but with a hint of tartness from the lemons. You could certainly use regular lemons with great results. The crust was another experiment, a pâte sablée with almond meal replacing a portion of the pastry flour. It turned out better than I imagined. I fully intend to test this recipe with Arrowroot instead of corn starch and with a buckwheat or another gluten free flour replacing the pastry flour portion. I however have eaten my weight in these tarts this week so, that will have to wait. If you try it, please let me know your results. Recipe for the original version as pictured follows. I was able to make a 9" tart and three 4" tarts with the recipe along with copious amounts of meringue. I turned the additional meringue into kisses and nests, but you can easily make a smaller portion. Four egg whites will make more than enough meringue for this tart.
Dragon Fruit and Meyer Lemon Meringue Tart, Almond Sablée Crust, Swiss Meringue
Almond Pâte Sablée Crust (Shortbread)
150g butter, unsalted (room temp)
90g powdered sugar
1/4 tsp good salt, flour de sel
2 egg yolks, whites reserved for meringue
55g almond meal, (almond flour)
200g pastry flour, (cake flour)
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together using medium speed for several minutes until it is light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, one at a time and continue to mix until fully incorporated. Sift together, the almond meal, pastry flour and salt and while the mixer is stopped, add it all at once. Mix on low speed until incorporated and the dough comes together. You can add some ice water, 1 tsp at a time if the dough is too dry, but I did not have this issue. Form the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic. Chill for at least an hour, up to 5 days in the refrigerator or a month in the freezer. When ready to use, roll out using additional almond meal or flour so it does not stick. Place into a tart pan and and chill again for 30 minutes before baking. Blind bake the crust at 375 degrees F using parchment paper to line the tart and pie weights of any kind to weigh it down. Bake until light golden brown, watch it closely as once it starts to brown it can burn quickly. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before filling.
Dragon Fruit and Meyer Lemon Curd:
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup corn starch
1 cup water
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten, room temperature (whites reserved for meringue)
Zest of 2 Meyer lemons
75ml Meyer lemon juice, fresh squeezed (approx 2 medium Meyer lemons)
1 packet frozen Organic Dragon Fruit puree, thawed in cold water (3.5oz)
1 T butter
In a small saucepan, place the sugar and cornstarch and mix together. Add the water and stir in egg yolks. Bring to a boil over medium heat stirring constantly. Cook for 1 minute once boiling, then remove from heat. It should be a thick pudding consistency. Add lemon juice, zest, dragon fruit puree, and butter and fold until smooth. You can place the mixture in a heat safe bowl until ready to use. Cover the surface directly with plastic wrap so a skin does not form. When ready to use and top with meringue, pour into pre-baked tart shell and smooth with an offset spatula.
Ratio of 2:1 sugar to egg whites
110g egg whites
pinch of cream of tartar
pinch of salt
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and spread the sugar out evenly. Place in a 400 degree F oven for 5-6 minutes or just until the edges start to melt. In the meantime place the egg whites, salt and cream of tartar in a bowl of an electric mixer. Place the bowl over a pot of simmering water (bain marie/water bath) and begin to whisk by hand. When the sugar is heated, slowly stream it into the egg whites while continuing to whisk. This can be done by spoonfuls if it is easier but do not add it too quickly. Continue to whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is warm to the touch. Place the bowl on the mixer and continue to whip using the whisk attachment until the meringue is glossy and stiff peaks form. Using a pastry bag with a tip of your choice, pipe onto the filled tart. Using a kitchen torch, toast the meringue. Alternatively, you can put it in the oven at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes, until the meringue is golden. I prefer the torch method. Store in the fridge until the filling is set before serving.
Home cook, Mom, wife, and crafty creative, Mandy is from California and has traveled the world and lived in lots of places. She has fallen in love with Dallas, TX and calls it home.