Thursday, May 10, 2012

Lemon Curd - Easy Peezy!

Lemons, lemons, lemons!  A couple months or so ago, I thought I was sick of citrus, but that was before I realized all of the wonderful things you can do with lemons!  I drive by my neighbors' amazing lemon trees dotted with dozens of lemons rotting on the branches, and it kills me.  One day (soon) I will be knocking down their doors begging for fruit.  Watch for a future post with more lemon recipes when I get the guts to do this.  I usually buy my lemons, but recently asked friends with yards if I can pick from their trees.  I'm running out of friends.
For now, I want to share this fun little gem of a recipe because it tastes so darn good.  I was always under the impression that lemon curd is difficult to make so I had never tried it (and also, the name "curd" just sounds kinda gross, anybody with me on this?  Can't we call it cream or something more tasty?)...maybe it was beginner's luck, but I didn't think it was that hard.  I adapted my recipe below from the following recipe on, and it turned out amazing.  I tried this a second time to make sure I wasn't getting cocky and to know that I could reproduce my work, and it turned out delicious once again.  This doesn't happen for me all that often, so let me have my moment!  A couple tips that I think made this work were that I used egg yolk only, and was very careful to get as much egg white out as possible.  This helps to create a silky texture because egg whites can cause a cottage cheese-like consistency when cooked and it doesn't add to the flavor that much (in my opinion).  Using just the yolks also creates the sunshine-yellow color I was hoping for.  The second thing I was very careful to do is exercise patience.  I cooked the curd on very low heat in a large pan, stirring with a wooden spoon, and never once stopped stirring.  No double boiler, no straining of the curd, nothing fancy, just cooking really slowly.  Additionally, I used a wooden spoon with a flat bottom (which I use for all of my jellies and jams as well) to avoid sticking on the bottom of the pan. This took approximately 10 minutes.  Recipe below!!

Misfit Lemons
Simple Lemon Curd
Makes 2 cups - can easily be doubled or tripled
Prep time:  20 minutes (squeezing juice takes the longest)
Cook time: 10-15 min

4 egg yolks
2/3 cup freshly-squeezed, strained lemon juice - about 2-3 lemons
3 oz. unsalted butter, melted
1 c. sugar
1 Tbsp. lemon zest

Lightly beat the egg yolks for consistency of texture; don't whip.  Combine egg yolks, lemon juice, and butter into a bowl.  Pour mixture into your large, heavy-bottomed pan on low heat and begin stirring immediately.  Continue to stir as you slowly pour the sugar into the mixture.  Never stop stirring, add in the zest.  Eventually the mixture will thicken and you will see it sticking to your spoon.  Pour into your choice of container; can be refrigerated up to a week.  Use in tarts, pies, on its own, or spread on toast or pancakes.  Delicious!  xo, AB

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