As much as I love the Pacific Northwest, I must concede of an attribute that is so uniquely Californian: local citrus. As if fresh citrus isn’t amazing enough.. Toss Meyer lemons into the mix & it is sheer bliss! Wintertime here equates to cheap Meyer lemons aplenty. So what would one do upon acquiring such precious fruits? Make Meyer lemon curd of course!
Making lemon curd is a simple yet magical process. The ingredients are simple enough: sugar, eggs, lemon juice, zest & butter. Within minutes over a double boiler, the loose mixture whisked will thicken & come to life into a beautiful & bright viscosity.
I really enjoy lemon curd that is more on the tart side. My favourite way to eat lemon curd is straight up, off the spoon. Or if I happen to have berries to accompany them, it makes for a fantastic treat. I’m a firm believer that lemon curd elevates anything that’s non-savoury. Lately, I’ve been putting lemon curd in with my goat milk yogurt & top it off with granola & berries. A fantastic way to start the day. Especially since I typically start my work days at 3am.
This recipe is adapted from the austere David Lebovitz; though I make use of the Meyer lemon zest! Without it, in my opinion, the lemon curd tastes like ordinary (though delicious) lemon curd. The Meyer lemon zest makes the difference & adds a subtle herbaceous, almost lavender undertone to the bright tartness. & since my stovetop is finicky electric; I cook the curd over a double-boiler. Or if you like to live dangerously, cook it directly in a saucepan while stirring with vigor.
MEYER LEMON CURD *
yields approximately 2 cups
65 grams of granulated sugar
2 whole eggs
¾ cup of Meyer lemon juice (approximately 3 medium to large sized Meyer lemons)
zest of one of the Meyer lemons that you juiced!
6 tablespoons of unsalted butter – cut into 4 or so slabs
a pinch of salt
* This recipe requires a whisk, rubber spatula, a double-boiler & a strainer.
Whisk all ingredients save for the butter in a metal or glass bowl fitted over your boiling pot. Continue to whisk until the mixture thickens. One way to be certain that it’s at the proper thickness is to tilt the whisk to see if the lemon curd droplets slowly drip. I like to jiggle the bowl; if the mixture wobbles like pudding; I deem it ready! Remove from heat – be careful not to give yourself a steam burn. Quickly whisk in the butter slabs. Once the butter is fully incorporated, strain the curd (for any bits of small cooked egg pieces & zest) into a heat-resistant vessel (I use glass almost always). Refrigerate. The curd keeps for well over two weeks, though mine scarcely lasts more than 5 days (we are AVID lemon curd eaters here).