Lemon Tart © French Moments

Last Updated: 4 March 2020


A classic lemon tart has a wonderful balance of lemons and a crispy sweet base. Tart enough to tingle on the tongue and delight your senses!

About Menton and its lemon tradition

Menton © Vinbaron - licence [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons
Menton © Vinbaron – licence [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons

The city of Menton is located between the foot hills of the Maritime Alps and the Mediterranean Sea, 30 km away from Nice. Menton is said to be the most Italianate town of the French Riviera. The ochre-coloured huddled houses of the town centre, its baroque churches with their campaniles and colonnades, and its lush palm trees and citrus trees surely make Menton one of the jewels of the Riviera.

Already in the 19th century, even before Menton belonged to France, British tourists flocked to Menton to benefit from its mild climate during the winter season. Among them, many celebrities, such as Robert Louis Stevenson and Queen Victoria herself.

Lemons from Menton © Perline - licence [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons
Lemons from Menton © Perline – licence [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons

Before then, Menton’s whole economy depended on the cultivation of lemons. The town is known as being the only place in France where lemons grow. Each year, Menton celebrates the Lemon Festival with colourful parades – whose floats are creatively decorated with citrus fruits – and splendid fireworks. This event which lasts two weeks, should not be missed if you happen to visit the area in February.


Home made Lemon Tart © French Moments
Home made Lemon Tart © French Moments

serves 6


  • 250g plain flour
  • 20g caster sugar
  • 175g unsalted butter cut in small cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 2-3 teaspoons of water

lemon filling

  • 2 eggs
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 150ml double cream
  • juice and zest of 2 lemons
  • 50g unsalted butter

for decoration

  • raspberries or strawberries work well with a lemon tart, a dollap of double cream is always nice too!


Lemon Tart © French Moments
Lemon Tart © French Moments
  • Make the pastry ‘pate brisée’ by rubbing in the flour and butter with your fingertips. Mix in the sugar then add the eggs and water and combine until the ingredients form a ball of dough. Knead lightly until smooth then wrap and refrigerate for at least 40 minutes.
  • Roll out the pastry into a large (25cm) tart tin. Trim the edges then chill again – this will help the pastry relax.

Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 180℃.

Lemon Tart © French Moments
Lemon Tart © French Moments
  • Put the sugar with the eggs, cream, lemon zest and juice into a bowl and whisk until nice and creamy. Melt the butter and whisk into the lemon mixture. Take your pastry case out of the fridge and pour in the mixture.
  • Bake the tart for 15 minutes then reduce the oven to 160℃ and continue cooking until the filling has set (approx 20 minutes extra).
  • Before eating let it rest for about an hour.
  • Serve with some red fruits, double cream or vanilla bean icecream. We served it with some warmed raspberries and a dash of icing sugar to decorate.


Check out our curated magazine on Flipboard for exclusive stories & insights on France!

Gems of Paris by French Moments

Like it? Leave a comment!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

Transparency: Some blog posts and pages may contain affiliate or sponsored links. If you are planning a trip, the use of these links helps us to run the site. There is no additional cost to you. All you have to do is click on the link and any booking you make is automatically tracked. Thank you for your support!

Escape to France with every email! Get insider insights, travel guides, cultural gems delivered and exclusive offers to your inbox twice a week. Your journey to Paris and France begins when you sign up!



24 Places to See in France in 2024