I’ve always loved lemon curd but have found that most versions are too sweet for my tastes and no, I don’t enjoy sucking on lemons, I just prefer my lemon curd to have a mouthwatering tang with its sweetness. So with the last of this winter’s precious Meyer lemons, I decided to brave the terrors of curdled curd and make my own. For some reason, lemon curd has an intimidating reputation for curdling if you squint at it sideways but fortunately for me, I found an easy peasy near bulletproof recipe from Fine Cooking. By mixing all the ingredients together, similar to mixing dough, before you heat it, the lemon curd is much more stable. Actually, as long as you don’t let it come to a boil you’re golden and tangy as it were 😉 Low and slow Mr. Hare. I’ve decreased the sugar by 1/4 cup and omitted the zest cuz while I’m a fan of zest, you get plenty of lemony flavor here without it and you don’t have to mar that silky smooth texture with little lumps of zest that will find a lovely home elsewhere, like in Meyer lemon-blueberry scones which taste lovely with a dollop of lemon curd just in case you’re interested or you could peel the rind in long spirals to infuse olive oil. The
beta-testers neighbors gave it an adult thumbs up but a toddler thumbs down, apparently the under 3 foot set like their lemon curd sweeter 😉 In case you have a hankering for lemon curd the other 8 months of the year this prized citrus isn’t in season, you can also substitute regular lemons but I’d decrease the lemon juice to 1/2 cup and increase the sugar to 1 cup cuz Meyer lemons aren’t as sour as regular lemons. And if you’re a 2 person household like we are, don’t worry about gobbling finishing it before it goes bad cuz lemon curd freezes very nicely cuz of all the, um, fat. Good thing it’s the beginning of cycling season 😀
6 tbsp butter, softened
3/4 c sugar
4 large eggs
2/3 c Meyer lemon juice (~3 large lemons)
Fill a large bowl with hot tap water. Place eggs in water for 10 minutes to warm. (I find this much faster than leaving them out at room temperature to warm up and truthfully, I never remember to do it until I need them, like 5 minutes ago.)
Cream butter and sugar together in another large bowl. Beat in 2 whole eggs, one at a time, till well combined. Separate remaining eggs and beat yolks into butter mixture. Discard egg whites. Mix in lemon juice, the mixture will look curdled but don’t worry, it’ll smooth out when heated.
In a small ~1 quart saucepan, heat lemon curd mixture over low heat till smooth and it has thickened to the consistency of a thin ketchup, stirring frequently to avoid uneven heating.
If you see steam coming up from the lemon curd, remove from heat and continue stirring as it will curdle if allowed to come to a boil. Pour into clean, sterilized jars. Makes ~1 1/2 cups. Store in the refrigerator. Will keep for 1 week once opened or for 2 months if frozen.