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bloviatrix

Lemon Curd: The Topic

299 posts in this topic

I made a few jars of Meyer Lemon marmalade from my tree this season. I love it's taste but I do not eat it as much as other preserves. So, I decided to use in desserts. I am thinking gelato and curd. Yesterday I made lemon curd using the marmalade. I based the recipe on Robert Wolke's in his 'Einstein' book. I simply substituted all the sugar in the recipe with the marmalade. I have to say it was pretty good with an nice bitter edge from the peel and great color. The curd went into pre-baked small tart shells. Did I even make lemon curd or is this called something else now?

Elie


E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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I am diggin this up because I made a lemon tart yesterday.

It is too runny. I was reading all the recipes and comparing. I used a blind baked tart shell and just poured the curd in. Is this what most people do, or like Neil said, bake briefly in the shell?

Wendy mentioned the metallic taste, which was DEFINITELY there. All people eating the tart was like "good good", I was like "UGH". I could not find the other thread...so this is not from a reactive pan? I was about to go buy a stainless steel pan to see if that would help. If that's not the problem, what should I do?

Thanks for helping. I have so little time to bake now as it's flu season...not like I can actually DO anything for these patients...


"Mom, why can't you cook like the iron chef?"

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If you make all the lemon curd recipes we all offered, you'd discover that it was the recipes that made the curd taste metalic or not. It has nothing to do with the pan (believe it or not).

If you have time, go back to the beginning of this thread and read all the results we had, it's a good read I think. The finecooking recipe (I hope I'm remembering correctly) turned out to have a non-metalic taste compared to others and the only differences lay in ingredient quantities. I still don't know the exact reason behind the metalic taste of some curd recipes and I wish I did have the answer.

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hello, i made the fine cooking lemon curd recipe today..... sooo good!! thanks for posting it up. i have made lemon curd only once so i don't have much to compare with but this recipe was fantastic.. easy to make, although it did take quite some time for all the butter to melt.. i got really impatient and increased the heat before i was supposed to and then i didn't sit there stirring the entire time b/c i started to work on the crust for my tart.. but it still turned out silky smooth and oh so delicious. :)


follow my food adventures as

the sweet gourmand

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Nigella's Recipe:

4 organic lemons

4 eggs

4 egg yolks

300 g sugar

200 g unsalted butter (Sorry for the metric for you USers, I have the UK version of the cookbook)

Zest and juice the lemons. 

Beat the eggs, yolks and sugar together until the sugar's dissolved.  Add butter,  lemon juice and zest and heat gently over low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens and grows smooth. 

I don't have a chance to test this weekend, but the recipe's there for anyone else's testing pleasure.

I used this recipe this morning with lemons from Malta. I gather they were from someone's garden, so possibly not truly organic, but natural, certainly. Look at their misshapenness. I also used these eggs, which were given to me last weekend by the farmer and his wife. Nice.

post-1-1112345472.jpg

Recipe worked a dream. Didn't quite boil....sieved finally.....and potted.

post-1-1112345671.jpg

I have also eaten slightly too much: most of it in warm spoonfuls, but some on Maltese galetti, or water biscuits. It has the most delicious, creamy texture, and given the ingredients, I can't believe it doesn't taste rich.

Mmmmm eggs. :)

post-1-1112345927.jpg

P.S. Moderator, why can I not upload pics here?


slacker,

Padstow, Cornwall

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Brief addendum:-

I tried the curd from the fridge last night, and it's gone grainy. I think next time I might beat the butter in after cooking, and stir till cold over ice for the silkiest of textures.

And when I say tried.....4 dessertspoonsful before by conscience kicked me.

:)


slacker,

Padstow, Cornwall

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Here is a recipe I've used for years--I can't remember where I originally got it, but it might have been Pierre Herme. It cooks up perfectly creamy every time, and does freeze very well. I've used it between cake layers, in tart shells with a layer of dark chocolate ganache, in little cshortbread cups, and all by itself by the spoonful! It's rich, but also very tart and fresh tasting. I also have made it with both salted and unsalted butter, and I prefer the salted, but both were excellent.

Tart Lemon Cream

(2 ½ - 3 cups)

1 c sugar

zest of three lemons, chopped very finely

4 eggs

3/4 c fresh lemon juice

10 ½ oz soft butter, in cubes

In the top of a double boiler, rub the sugar and zest together until moist and grainy. Whisk in the eggs, then the juice. Cook over simmering water until it reaches 180°and is thick. Set aside to cool to 140°, then strain into the bowl of a blender and blend, adding the butter, five cubes at a time, then continue blending for 3-4 minutes.

Will freeze for 1 month, or keep in the refrigerator for 4 days.

Hint--line cupcake tins with plastic and freeze the cream in them, wrapping each frozen cupful tightly for storage. Then, to serve, make and cool tuille cups on the outside of the muffin tins and the cream will fit inside to thaw for service.


It's not the destination, but the journey!

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Yep, that's Herme's lemon cream. Easily one of the best-tasting substances in the known universe.


"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Joining in a little late here...

Herme's recipe looks very similar to the one from Rose Levy Beranbaum's Pie and Pastry Bible. That's the one I always use. It is delicious -- nice and tart.

edit: no wait, she does a very Beranbaum thing. She whips the yolks with sugar, adds the butter over low heat, and then strains it into the unprocessed lemon zest. It gives a very nice fresh taste.


Edited by Behemoth (log)

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I tried making a double batch of PH's Lemon Cream. It tastes great but I stirred over a double boiler for almost 2 hours and still never got the mixture to 180 as the recipe states it should. I think I managed 170 and by that time I'd had enough. The recipe says it should take 10 minutes. I figured it would take a bit longer because I doubled it but what's going on? I used a digital timer and a candy thermometer. The candy thermomter actually never read over 150 but it could be because it was on the edge of the pan.

I used half of it in a mousse which tastes great and the other half is in my fridge to be used in tarts. It is very thick and I'm wondering how I get it into tart shells now. I'd like it to have a smooth top so I can finish it with apple jelly and berries. Can I heat it up until it's fluid enough or will this negate the effect of the time spent in the blender? Any ideas from someone who's used this recipe?


Edited by CanadianBakin' (log)

Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

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Hmm, greater minds than mine will answer but I crank up the fire under my double boiler considerably so I can get the temperature up. My arm would have flat fallen off after one hour--I'd of never lasted for two! I don't know about re-heating it though. Test a little bit--maybe zap it in the microwave. Could you easier slice it for a nice level finish--or freeze it & slice it???

Hey, y'know what?? I got my lemon cream out of the freezer--had a little leftover--and I grabbed a knife still hot from the dishwasher drying cycle--it cut smooth real nice--y'know what--you could even get creative with a few strips & stuff too--they might, might not stand up at room temp--but they could still curl around & look cool.

Ooh ooo, pour it out on a sheet tray, get it the depth you want for the tarts--freeze it then use cookie cutters--maybe??? Or even mound it up in the tart shell & smooth it with a hot knife.

But but but I made like four times the recipe or something and I used a quick read thermometer and it took a while but maybe like 20-30 mins. And I dipped the thermometer down into where the heat was--because a lot of my pan was up out of the heated area --y'know??? Just a rigged up double boiler--not a lot of the lemon stuff was directly over the heated water--more was hanging out above the heat--Plus I have to make myself slow down while whisking so I don't cool it as I stir.

Random lemon cream thoughts. That should work out for you though--a hot knife.

PS. It'd be a shame to have to eat it all and make more :laugh:


Edited by K8memphis (log)

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I tried making a double batch of PH's Lemon Cream. It tastes great but I stirred over a double boiler for almost 2 hours and still never got the mixture to 180 as the recipe states it should. I think I managed 170 and by that time I'd had enough. The recipe says it should take 10 minutes. I figured it would take a bit longer because I doubled it but what's going on? I used a digital timer and a candy thermometer. The candy thermomter actually never read over 150 but it could be because it was on the edge of the pan.

I used half of it in a mousse which tastes great and the other half is in my fridge to be used in tarts. It is very thick and I'm wondering how I get it into tart shells now. I'd like it to have a smooth top so I can finish it with apple jelly and berries. Can I heat it up until it's fluid enough or will this negate the effect of the time spent in the blender? Any ideas from someone who's used this recipe?

K8's right... next time crank up the fire. My arm would have fallen off long before two hours' time! The only time I have problems with non-climbing temperatures is when the a/c comes on and the overhead vent blows directly downward and into the pan, cooling off the contents. :sad:

I would think that you should be able to fill your tart shells after allowing the lemon cream come to room temperature, then giving it a good stir. With all that butter in there, it should chill up nicely for you.

Di

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I tried making a double batch of PH's Lemon Cream. It tastes great but I stirred over a double boiler for almost 2 hours and still never got the mixture to 180 as the recipe states it should. I think I managed 170 and by that time I'd had enough. The recipe says it should take 10 minutes. I figured it would take a bit longer because I doubled it but what's going on? I used a digital timer and a candy thermometer. The candy thermomter actually never read over 150 but it could be because it was on the edge of the pan.

I am certain that the problem lies with your double-boiler set-up. If you set up a good system, you'll reach the right temp in less than 25 minutes. I use a large a large stainless mixing bowl (6 or 7qts) set over a large pot with a few cups of simmering water. The mixing bowl sets down into the pot of water, forming a loose seal, keeping the steam under the bowl. With this set-up, it takes less than 10 minutes to reach 180. It also speeds up the rate at which the lemon cream cools down to 140F (at which point you start beating in the butter).

Use a large pot for the water, and a large bowl for the lemon cream. That way you maximize the surface area across which heat exchange occurs, and shorten the time it takes. If you'd like, I can post a picture later on showing you my setup. But I think you get the point.


"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Thanks for the advice guys! I think you're right. Towards the end I did crank the heat but that didn't help. I was using a 2-quart glass measure over a small pot to seal but that left the mixture quite deep. It looks like I'm going to need to buy a better sized SS bowl. :)


Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

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Aha! No wonder it took so long -- glass is a very, very poor conductor of heat. Just to follow-up, here is an example of a set-up that will get you up to temp in no time:

Clickity-click


"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Yep, that's Herme's lemon cream. Easily one of the best-tasting substances in the known universe.

I made PH's lemon cream this weekend. It tastes like a bit of ambrosia to me! All other lemon cream receipes will be put on the back shelf and this one will be a standby. Very creamy, rich and tart all at the same time!

I had no problem getting the mixture to 180 degrees. I don't own a double boiler, so rigged up a system with a smallish stainless steel saucepan inside a larger one. The small top pan did not touch the boiling water. What did surprise me though, was how quickly it cooled to 140 degrees - the temp at which you add the butter.

I made a tart with some of it and spread freshly whipped cream over the top (just to add a few more calories :biggrin: ). I ate some straight out of the bowl as I could not seem to stop myself, and mixed the last bit with fresh BC strawberries in a ramekin and the leftover whipped cream on top of that.

Fabulous!!!!!!!!


Life is short, eat dessert first

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Fabulous indeed. That stuff makes for an awesome, and easy, lemon tart as well.


"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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Patrick or anyone else who's used PH's Lemon Cream... do you think I could use it to make lemon squares on a shortbread crust and then freeze till needed?


Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

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Okay, so I'm completely confused by all these different opinions.  I've made S. Yard's curd before and really liked it.  I've been thinking of trying RLB's mousseline buttercream from the Cake Bible which, to make lemon flavored, says to mix in lemon curd.  If you were doing that, which curd would you use in order to ensure you had a bright lemon flavor.

I'm pretty late to this thread, but RLB's mousseline BC recipe works fine with just lemon juice added. I did a batch a few weeks ago and thought it tasted great. (I haven't tried the MBC with lemon curd yet.)


Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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Patrick or anyone else who's used PH's Lemon Cream... do you think I could use it to make lemon squares on a shortbread crust and then freeze till needed?

I've never frozen it, but I don't see any reason why you couldn't do that.


"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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I've always made the lemon curd from one of Maida Heatter's cookbooks and it works out beautifully every time. I'd post but I'm not at home.

Any more interesting and unusual ways that you've used it?

jb

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I noticed the Cooks Illustrated link above, but it no longer worked. Has anyone tried their recipe? It is really fantastic. It has a tablespoon of heavy cream, which reallys rounds it out. I'll post if anyone wants to compare.

-Becca


-Becca

www.porterhouse.typepad.com

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I noticed the Cooks Illustrated link above, but it no longer worked. Has anyone tried their recipe? It is really fantastic. It has a tablespoon of heavy cream, which reallys rounds it out. I'll post if anyone wants to compare.

-Becca

Oh, yes please.

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Cooks Illustrated's Lemon Curd-

1/3 cup lemon juice

2 large eggs

1 egg yolk

1/2 cup sugar

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoon heavy cream

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch table salt

Heat lemon juice in a non-reactive saucepan over medium heat but not boiling. Whisk eggs and yolk in medium nonreactive bowl; gradually whisk in sugar. Whisking constantly, slowly pour hot lemon juice into eggs, then return mixture to the pan and cook constantly with wooden spoon, nutil mixture registers 170 degrees and is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 3 minutes.

Immediately remove pan from heat and stir in cold butter until incorporated; stir in cream, vanilla, and salt, then pour curd through fine-mesh strainer into small non-reactive bowl. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on surface; refrigerate until needed.


-Becca

www.porterhouse.typepad.com

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Wendy - I totally agree about the whipping of eggs and sugar before cooking. Completely wasted effort since adding liquid and cooking will remove all the air you worked so hard to incorporate.

I'm surprised you bring your curd to a full boil. You don't find you get a curdled, grainy texture? Also, if you wanted to bake it in a tart shell I'm afraid it wouldn't set up properly since the eggs had already been cooked as far as they could go.

Wendy and Nightscotsman, I was wondering about the whipping too. So I went back and read the fine cooking article online. She explained her reasoning and it really makes sense. Here is the address.

http://www.taunton.com/finecooking/pages/c00197.asp


-Becca

www.porterhouse.typepad.com

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