About Fruit Curd
Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Wicca in the Kitchen:
“Magical Uses: Lemon is a love fruit, but should be mixed with sugar for maximum results. Lemon pies, the British lemon curd, and lemon puddings are all love-inducing. Women once served lemon pies to their husbands to keep them home at night.”
Lemon: A Global History by Toby Sonneman:
“The lemon became a star of the dessert world in Europe after the mid-seventeenth century, when sugar became readily available at reasonable cost. The British adored a rich lemon custard, which was first called a ‘pudding’ and later dubbed ‘lemon curd’, using it as both a preserve and pie filling.
A jar (10-12oz) of high quality lemon curd costs between 7 and 12 dollars. A pint of homemade lemon curd made of high quality ingredients costs about 4 dollars. You need a sauce pan, a whisk, and a kitchen thermometer. And 15 minutes of your time.
This recipe makes less sweet, more bright-lemony, and more sauce-like version of curd. To make thicker, milder, and sweeter lemon curd use 1/2 cup instead of 1 cup of lemon juice with pulp.
Servings: 1 pint
- 1 cup lemon juice with pulp and zest
- 140 g sugar
- 75 g egg yolks ~5 large eggs
- 100 g butter unsalted
Measure sugar, butter, and egg yolks. Cube butter and keep it at room temperature. Scrub and rinse lemons with hot water to wash away all possible coatings or treatments.
Make sure lemons are dry before zesting. Microplane is the best tool for this task. Apply just enough force to remove only the outer yellow part of the rind. Zest lemons and reserve the zest.
Avoid scraping the same section of the lemon more than once. You should see pale yellow, not white zested pith. White pith adds bitterness to the curd.
Peel and quarter lemons.
Place lemons in a blender jar and blend for a minute on the lowest speed. You want to mash them without breaking seeds. Broken seeds add bitterness to the lemon juice.
Line a bowl with 2-3 times layered cheesecloth, pour blended lemons into it.
Mix sugar, lemon juice with pulp and zest, and egg yolks in a saucepan. Place the pan on a low heat.
Constantly whisking, bring it to 160F/80C.
Continue whisking for a few minutes while it cools down. When the temperature reaches 113F/45C, add cubed soft butter and whisk to emulsify it. Pour lemon curd into clean jars, cover with lids, and keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.