Back to main site

Recipe: Marco Pierre White’s Harvey’s Lemon Tart


P&O Cruises' Food Hero Marco Pierre White shares one of his favourite puddings

Marco Pierre White’s Harvey’s Lemon Tart with a small lemon soufflé

This is my most preferred pudding and a wonderful way to finish a meal. Any chef worthy of his name will have a lemon tart on his menu, and this one has been with me since Harvey’s. We made it twice a day so it was always fresh and aromatic. Serve with a little whipped cream or a small lemon soufflé to garnish.

Serves 8



500g plain flour

175g icing sugar

250g unsalted butter at room temperature

Grated zest of 1 lemon

1 vanilla pod, split open

1 ½ eggs, beaten


Lemon filling

9 eggs

400g caster sugar

Grated zest of 2 lemons

Juice of 5 lemons

250ml double cream



50g icing sugar

Sprigs of mint


How to make


  1. Sift the flour and icing sugar and work in the butter. Make a well in the centre and add the lemon zest and seeds from the vanilla pod. Add the beaten eggs. Knead the mixture, working as quickly as you can, until everything is combined into a smooth dough. Wrap in cling film and leave to rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C
  3. Grease a 20cm flan tin with a removable base. Roll out the pastry and line the tin allowing an overhang of no less than 1cm
  4. Line the pastry case with greaseproof paper and fill with dry baking beans to insure the sides, as well as the bottom, are weighted. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove the paper and the beans and bake for a further 10 minutes


Lemon filling

  1. Whisk the eggs with the caster sugar and lemon zest in a large bowl until smooth. Stir in the lemon juice then add the cream. Continue to whisk until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined. Skim any froth from the top
  2. Reduce the oven temperature to 120oC. Pour the cold filling into the hot pastry case (this will ensure that the case is sealed)
  3. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool and set for about an hour


To serve

  1. When ready to serve, preheat the grill to very hot. Sift the icing sugar over the top of the tart and place it under the grill to caramelise the sugar to a light golden brown. Alternatively, you can sprinkle the tart with icing sugar without caramelising it
  2. Cut the tart into slices and decorate each with a sprig of mint. You could even garnish it with a small lemon soufflé (as shown in the photo)



The secret of a really good lemon tart is that the filling is firm and clear and the pastry light and crisp. It should never be cut immediately after it is cooked, as it needs at least an hour to cool and set or the filling will be too runny.


Recipe taken from Marco Pierre White in Hell’s Kitchen (Edbury Press)

Find out about P&O Cruises' Food Heroes