Lemon Cloud Tart with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

Dessert, Fruit Desserts, Garden Recipes, Pies and Tarts, Seasonal Recipes, Spring Recipes | 25 comments

I decided it was finally time to do something about the rhubarb monster growing in the backyard. Or rather, monsters. Yes, I was crazy enough last year to think that 4 rhubarb plants would be just right. When I am in fact giving it away left and right and all the while it just keeps growing! Doing something about the monster meant making Lemon Cloud Tart with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote.


I’m warning you up front, the recipe I decided on is certainly not something for a busy day. It is worth it though. And if I can do it (and style the photos) with a 2 1/2 year old “helping” me, I’m betting that you can too. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you. It took me the better part of Saturday morning.


I had meant to make something with the Rhubarb while Eric’s parents visited last week, but the time just got away from us. We spent it on other things like bowling (it was Logan’s 1st time and he’s been begging for a few weeks), going to the Zoo, the obligatory weekly Costco trip, and just hanging out. I am sorry that we all didn’t get to enjoy this together though.


Madeline decided that she would taste the rhubarb before it was made into compote, despite my warnings against it. Look on her face just as she realized that it was really tart and just not very good at all was priceless. She decided that Bunny (her stuffed animal) would like to eat it instead.

Amazing thing how good rhubarb tastes when you add a bit of sugar and cook it up. Even better when it’s paired with juicy strawberries and a creamy lemon tart. This recipe is deceptively light. Make no mistake, it is definitely not diet food. It wouldn’t even hold up to being called “light.” It’s full of fat, calories, sugar, and tons of flavor even though it feels lighter than air. Definitely a tart worthy of a special occasion, or maybe the tart is the special occasion itself.


Lemon Cloud Tart with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

adapted from Bon Appétit

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Lemon curd filling
4 large egg yolks
3 large eggs
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, diced
1/2 cup sugar

Pistachio crust
1/2 cup pistachios, shelled
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
1 large egg yolk
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

Lemon crème fraîche
3/4 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
3/4 cup crème fraîche
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel

Strawberry Rhubarb Compote, recipe follows


Whisk yolks and eggs in medium bowl to blend. Combine lemon juice, butter, and 1/2 cup sugar in large metal bowl. Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water; whisk until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Gradually whisk 1/3 of hot butter mixture into eggs, then whisk mixture back into bowl with remaining butter mixture set over simmering water. Whisk constantly until custard thickens and thermometer inserted into mixture registers 180°F, about 5 minutes (do not boil). Place plastic wrap directly on surface of lemon curd; chill overnight (or if you're impatient like me, chill in the freezer for about 30 minutes). Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.

Finely grind pistachios in processor. Using electric mixer, beat butter, powdered sugar, and lemon peel in medium bowl until well blended. Add yolk and beat until smooth. Beat in pistachios, then flour, and salt. Gather dough into ball; flatten into disk. Wrap in plastic and chill 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Roll dough out on floured surface to 12-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter tart pan with removable bottom; press crust onto bottom and up sides of pan; trim excess dough overhang. Chill 20 minutes. Bake crust until golden brown and cooked through, pressing with fork if c rust bubbles, about 25 minutes. Cool crust in pan on rack. Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and store at room temperature.

Lemon Crème Fraîche:
Using electric mixer, beat whipping cream, crème fraîche, 3 tablespoons sugar, and lemon peel in large bowl until stiff peaks form. Spoon half of lemon curd and half of lemon crème fraîche into another large bowl. Using small rubber spatula, gently fold curd and lemon crème fraîche together, creating marble effect and being careful not to overmix to retain marbling. Spoon marbled mixture in dollops into cooled crust. Using tip of knife or small rubber spatula, swirl and pull mixture upwards in peaks. Repeat with remaining curd and crème fraîche mixture. Refrigerate tart at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours. Remove pan sides. Place tart on platter. Serve with strawberry rhubarb compote.

Strawberry Rhubarb Compote
adapted from Bon Appétit

  • 2 cups 1/2-inch pieces fresh rhubarb
  • 2 cups strawberries, hulled and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Combine all ingredients except strawberries in a heavy large saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until rhubarb is tender, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Remove cover, add strawberries, and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Transfer rhubarb mixture to bowl. Cover and chill until cold, about 2 hours. Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.

Katie Goodman

About the Author:

Katie’s lifelong interest in cooking good food has shown her that part of the goodness in life is enjoying delicious food with friends and family. She is: Mom. Writer. Photographer. Recipe Developer. Website Founder. Lover of all things good in life. A mix of great recipes, family memories, and yummy photography is what Katie serves up each week at GoodLife Eats™. Katie and her family reside in Colorado.

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  • 1
    Jessica @ How Sweet - May 24, 2010 @ 11:46 am

    Lemon cloud just sounds so fluffy and delicious. Beautiful, too!


  • 2
    My Kitchen in the Rockies - May 24, 2010 @ 12:52 pm

    I like the idea with the pistachios in the crust. Rhubarb is one of my favorite. Thanks.


  • 3
    Jane - May 24, 2010 @ 1:31 pm

    How refreshing and beautiful! Your photos, as usual, are gorgeous. What a treat to visit your blog.


  • 4
    Maria - May 24, 2010 @ 1:50 pm

    That looks and sounds like an amazing dessert! And gorgeous photos!


  • 5
    Maria - May 24, 2010 @ 4:05 pm

    It is snowing today:( We haven't planted our garden, but I guess that is a good thing. We do have a lot of rhubarb though. Our four plants are going crazy! I will have to try this recipe next.


  • 6
    SLCFoodie - May 24, 2010 @ 5:04 pm

    Beautiful photos! I'm hoping that my rhubarb matures enough this year for me to actually make something with it. And if it does, I'll be returning to this lovely recipe!


  • 7
    Melanie - May 24, 2010 @ 5:30 pm

    Oh my goodness, what a deliciously unique dessert! You had me at lemon cloud and rhubarb but when I saw that there was a pistachio crust and creme fraiche involved…well, I was lost forever. Looks like I need to go beg some rhubarb off the neighbors again!


  • 8
    Whitney - May 24, 2010 @ 7:07 pm

    I LOVE the idea of a pistachio crust with the lemon filling. I imagine the sour and sweet and nutty will be an exciting combination. This will be a 'must-try'! And what great food styling.


  • 9
    dishinanddishes - May 24, 2010 @ 7:17 pm

    Gorgeous pictures make me want some of that right now!


  • 10
    Jamie - May 25, 2010 @ 1:33 am

    Gorgeous! I had the same reaction as Madeline when I tried raw rhubarb. This crust sounds superb!


  • 11
    Amy from She Wears Many Hats - May 25, 2010 @ 2:41 am

    Yum! I wish I had some growing here. Love the color!


  • 12
    Nachiketa - May 25, 2010 @ 8:23 am

    Hi!love your cloud tart… so pretty to look n must be yummy to eat.Loved surprising my friends with these :) Lemon Cake, Lemon Tarts ~ Happy Anniversary Shikha & Sujith n Surprise for SharadCheers,The Variable, Crazy Over Desserts – NachiketaCatch me on facebook @ Crazy Over Desserts


  • 13
    Cherine - May 25, 2010 @ 8:56 am

    This looks absolutely yummy!


  • 14
    Jennifer - May 25, 2010 @ 9:57 am

    If the lemon piece of heaven wasn't enough you surely made this over the top with the compete! Im loving the fresh flavour combination! Gorgeous!!!


  • 15
    smalltownoven - May 25, 2010 @ 10:25 am

    Gorgeous! Looks like the perfect summer treat.


  • 16
    We Are Not Martha - May 25, 2010 @ 12:21 pm

    Isn't rhubarb just the prettiest thing? And I LOVE the name "lemon cloud." It sounds (and looks) absolutely heavenly!Sues


  • 17
    Sophia - May 25, 2010 @ 5:58 pm

    Rhubarb is the perfect spring food! The colors in this dessert are phenomenal! Thanks for sharing!


  • 18
    Alejandra - May 25, 2010 @ 6:06 pm

    This looks heavenly. I have such a passion for all things lemon!


  • 19
    simplehungrybroke - May 25, 2010 @ 6:14 pm

    love your photos and this pretty layout! this rhubarb recipe matches it perfectly too!


  • 20
    Pink Velvet Bird - May 25, 2010 @ 6:48 pm

    I'd love a vegan version!


  • 21
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction - May 28, 2010 @ 1:04 am

    This looks absolutely lovely and your photos are stunning, as always! I love all things strawberry and rhubarb.


  • 22
    Stella - May 28, 2010 @ 2:14 am

    Hey Katie, I normally see this tart with strawberries. Good idea to pair it with something one normally pairs with strawberries! It looks absolutely tantalizing too…


  • 23
    Geek+Nerd - June 07, 2010 @ 2:39 pm

    This looks crazy delicious!


  • 24
    Marsha Cade - July 28, 2010 @ 8:31 pm

    This is delicious! I made the crust with pistachios from my website, ( OMG was this ever good. My guests were in awe!


  • 25
    zuckerwandlerin - March 19, 2012 @ 4:00 pm

    I fell in love. In love with this cake!
    Thank you for the recipe!


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