Lion Tart

Lion Tart

I was browsing aimlessly around the internet and came across a pie that had a cat face done with pastry. Immediately, I was drawn to it. A few days later and several YouTube videos on how to draw lions and hundreds of Google Images of ‘kind lion’ and ‘wise lion’ and ‘Aslan’, I decided that I would dip my toe into template making after years of using what was available out there. Can you tell that I am not a risk taker?

Let me tell you it was no easy task for me – I have no natural talent in drawing. I’m great a replicating something that’s in front of me but coming up with something on my own is a nightmare. My housemate was very helpful though – after a few pointers on how I had to look at objects as shapes rather than things and copy the shape I finally came up with a reasonable template that I was happy with. Template now available for download here.


Then came the actual tart baking. I had some leftover lemon curd from my previous project and decided to make another lemon tart – this time with a sweet shortcrust pastry – recipe as shown here.

After making the tart the usual way, it was time for the fun part – the lion! To make him, I first decided that I would cut everything free hand and just refer to the template. Results below.


It took a long time. I suggest you start early in the morning if you want to photograph your project in daylight.


I decided the pieces for the face did not cut it and I was bad a free-hand shortcrust pastry cutting. Decided to cut out pieces of the template to use as a stencil and remade his face.

The lion’s face still was not how I envisioned him after all of that effort! In my template I felt his expression was exactly right but I just could not for the life of me replicate it in pastry. I am sorry to say that I was a quitter – I stopped at two tries. I plonked all the pieces onto my lemon tart and voila – lion tart. Kinda.

Lion Tart

Overall, not perfect but it was a great learning project. I usually shy away from drawing and creating so this really pushed me beyond my comfort zone. I am also suddenly very strangely drawn to animals as inspiration now. Hopefully I do the next animal justice.

Lemon Tart with Coconut Pastry

They say when life gives you lemons, you should make lemonade. I branched out and decided to make a lemon tart.


Sparkling lemon tart

I was actually very pleased the image I managed to capture. Word of caution though – your food will be covered in a fine layer of sparkler dust at the end of the exercise!

Rectangular lemon tart

Do you like my lemon juicer? It only took me several years to decide on which to get. I love it to bits – it was worth every penny.

The actual baking of the lemon tart was not too difficult either and the result was pleasing – smooth, creamy curd that cut cleanly, candied lemon that was intense and a coconut flavour through the tart pastry. Recipe below:


1 cup plain flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1 1/2 sticks chilled butter, cut into half inch cubes
1-2 tablespoons of chilled water, as needed.

1. Preheat oven to 160 Celcius (fan-forced).
2. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water and mix again until mixture comes together. Wrap pastry in cling wrap and leave in the fridge for 20 minutes.
3. Roll pastry into a sheet large enough to fit into the pastry pan. Cut off excess.
4. Bake for 25 minutes or until slightly brown.

Lemon filling from here

Candied lemon from here