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Lemon Cake by Manet

Citroentaart van Manet - Lyklema Fine Art

Edouard Manet, The Lemon (1880)
Musee D'orsay

Manet came from a Parisian bourgeois background and was sent around the world by his father to look around and discover everything. After his six-month sea voyage to Rio de Janeiro, he and school friend Proust enrolled in January 1850 as a student of Thomas Couture and as a copyist at the Louvre. The old masters often remained his inspiration later on. Manet made quite a few still lifes. Unlike the art connoisseurs of 'Écoles', he did not look down on this. He was able to demonstrate his mastery in the simplicity of just one central subject. Real things from real life and in relatively simple and bright color schemes are a precursor to impressionism. It inspired us to create a new dish. Simple but complex: Lemon tart with Merinque.

Lemon Merinque cake

• Flower
• 70 g icing sugar
• 30 g almond flour
• pinch of salt
• 105 g butter, cold and cubed
• ½ egg, beaten

Lemon filling
• 1½ leaves of gelatin
• 150 g sugar
• 1 lemon, zest
• 1 lime, zest
• 2 lemons, juice
• 2 limes, juice
• 2 eggs
• 3 egg yolks
• 175 g butter, at room temperature

• 60 ml of water
• 200 + 30 g sugar
• 3 proteins
• pinch of salt

For the pie crust
Mix the flour, almond flour, icing sugar and pinch of salt in a bowl. Add the cold butter in pieces and rub it into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add half an egg and knead into a dough. Then let it rest covered in the refrigerator for an hour. Knead the dough briefly and cover the 20 cm cake ring with the dough. Press the dough well. Poke holes in the dough with a fork. Place in the refrigerator for another 20 minutes.

Bake the tart shell at 180 degrees for 17-22 minutes until golden brown. In the meantime, mix the egg yolk with the whipped cream and brush the cake inside and out with the yolk mixture (so you have carefully removed the cake ring in the meantime). Then bake the cake for another 2-4 minutes.

Beat the lemon-lime filling until fluffy and spread it over the base. Using a piping bag, decorate the cake with the Italian meringue and burn it off with a burner. Voila, as Manet would say.

Lemon lime cream
Soak the gelatin leaves in cold water. Place the sugar, lemon and lime zest, lemon and lime juice, eggs and egg yolks in a saucepan and heat over a low heat while stirring. The filling will thicken, but should not boil. Then remove the filling from the heat at 85 °C. Pour the lemon mixture through a fine sieve and stir in the gelatin. Cut the butter into small pieces and stir it into the filling. Let the filling set in the refrigerator.

Italian merinque

Dissolve 200 grams of sugar in water. Measure the temperature up to 113 degrees with a candy thermometer. In the meantime, put the egg whites with a pinch of salt in the bowl of a (freestanding) mixer. Gradually add the remaining 30 grams of sugar. Remove the sugar syrup from the heat when it has reached a temperature of 118 °C and pour the syrup into the egg white, whisking and carefully, in a thin stream. Then turn the mixer to maximum and beat the Italian meringue until it is lukewarm.

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