Zesty Lemon Curd
I truly believe that the best summer desserts are light and include the amazing berries that summer offers. Heavy flour and cranking on the oven will do just fine in Fall and winter, but for summer…I stick to the stove top.
Having varying curds on hand in the fridge is a welcome friend to have on hand in the summer months. A girlfriend stops by for tea or coffee…grab some berries and you’re set. Your husband invites people for dinner, make a simple cookie or scone and drizzle curd over top and voila…fancy dessert. Add curd into a muffin recipe and you have a much more gourmet breakfast than your family will ever know. Need some “alone time”? Drizzle a regular gfree scone with a curd of your choice and relax.
I have said more than once that lemon is my favorite. But don’t let that limit you. Curd is a technique. Once you get the basics down, your pallet and imagination are all that hold you back. I have made blackberry lemon curd. Tangerine cinnamon, orange cocoa, chili lime, honey rhubarb… all you have to do is combine flavors you like, the worst that can happen is it will be gross and you won’t make that one again. I definitely thinks it’s worth the experimentation.
Try this one on for size, it’s fairly common and has everyone you serve it to thinking you’re a much better cook than you really are. Enjoy.
3 large eggs, room temp
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup fresh lemon juice, plus zest
4 tablespoons butter, room temp.
a pinch of salt
2/3 cup lemon juice, approximately 3 lemons
In a stainless steel bowl placed over a double boiler, whisk together the eggs, sugar and lemon juice with zest, until well blended. Cook whisking constantly, to prevent curdling. When mixture becomes thick (think Hollandaise sauce or 160° F). This will take about ten minutes.
Remove from heat and immediately run thorough a fine mesh strainer to remove lumps. Cut the butter into small pieces (cubes) and whisk into the mixture until the butter is melted. Let cool. Cover immediately to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for up to 1 week.
Note: If you want a lighter curd, whip 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream and fold into lemon curd.
Room temperature lemons provide more juice. After squeezing, strain the juice to remove any pulp. Zest. Cold lemons are much easier to grate. Grate lemons just before using as the zest will lose moisture if it sits too long.
Zest cold, juice warm.