Spring is a time for foraging farmers’ markets, whipping up wonderful treats and prancing along to picnics in the sun. But, with summer and swimwear on the horizon, it’s also the time to unshackle the kitchen from nasty ingredients such as… and I hate to say it… butter.
So, when the gals and I got together to forage the farmers’ market and whip up wonderful treats, ahead of prancing along to our picnic in the sun – we found a recipe for lemon curd that was butter-free! A much lighter alternative than the usual recipe… but it tasted good! I assure you! Trust me, don’t be alarmist, it has all the good stuff – lemon and sugar and eggs!
In truth, this butter-free recipe was the sacrificial lamb, to allow us to gorge on other nasty treats like heavenly, gooey and stinky cheese, fig and nut bread and Jamón Serrano. I like to think of this lemon curd as the carbon offset you can buy nowadays when booking flights. Just a little something to make yourself feel better about the unintended consequences of your indulgence.
We found this treat-of-a-recipe on Food.com and we send our thanks to the contributor, Mandy, for sharing this gem.
1 cup fresh lemon juice (the recipe suggests you could make it on lime juice, and we added some fresh orange juice with the lemon and it was delicious)
grated zest of the lemons, oranges, or limes you use (avoid the white part, which is bitter)
1 scant cup of sugar
3 farm fresh eggs at room temperature (the bright orange colour of our curd came from the vibrant egg yolks we used)
seeds from 2 vanilla pods, or equivalent in extract or paste
sterilised jars for storage
In a small saucepan, over a medium heat, dissolve sugar into juice and add zest.
Lightly beat the eggs in a bowl. Whisking constantly, slowly pour the slightly cooled lemon/sugar syrup into the egg. Beat for 2 minutes then slowly transfer back into the slightly cooled saucepan.
Heat slowly over a low heat, stirring constantly, until it just starts to bubble at the edges and begins to thicken. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
Transfer to a container and store in the fridge. Alternatively, if you’re looking to prolong the curd’s life, pour warm curd into warm sterilised jars and screw down the lid immediately, allowing it to cool sealed.
To sterilise jars, place clean jars and lids into an oven set between 90-120°C until hot. Carefully remove from the oven and fill and seal whilst hot (or the same temperature as the curd). I prefer jars with metal lids, that are plastic coated on the inside and have a visible dent on the top which, when sealed hot, sucks inwards and when opened pops out, as this popping is a surefire way to know the contents is fresh.
I’ve since used the remaining curd to fill a sponge cake with blueberries. I’ll have to share that recipe with you soon because it was delicious, albeit, not summer swim-suit friendly (but, I guess you can’t have everything in life).