Lemons are loaded with many health benefits which include easing inflammation, hindering kidney stones, boosting immunity, fighting diseases and many more. But what is lemon curd? Have you heard of it before? How can we use it? Let’s check all of it.
What is Lemon Curd?
It is usually a condiment considered with tea and is used just like jam or custard. It is tangy and sweet used as topping with strong lemon taste; you can say it’s stronger than lemon custard. Its structure is smooth and silky and can be spread on scones and different foods. In Britain, lemon curd can be called as lemon cheese.
What Goes Into It?
Traditionally this is made with lemon zest and Meyer lemon juice. These special lemons are a crossbreed of regular lemons and mandarins or oranges. This gives lemon curd a different taste and flavor. However, lemon curd can also be made with regular lemons. These also include egg yolks and some sugar. Some recipes use egg whites and/or butter. This was about the traditional way of making it but commercial lemon curds may include thickeners like cornstarch which dilutes the quality of lemon curd and its flavor. They also contain preservatives, flavorings, and colors.
How To Use Lemon Curd?
This is generally used as scone topping but it can also be used on cakes, breads, pancakes, waffles, tarts, cupcakes, muffins, crumpets, cream puffs, cookies, etc. It can be used as filling in lemon meringue pies. However, due to its strong taste, it can’t be eaten as is.
How Long Does it Stays Fresh?
Unfortunately, it doesn’t stay as long as jam. Whenever you prepare it, you will have to use it up within a week or two. Fortunately, homemade lemon curd is versatile and better than store-bought lemon curd; so, it can be used up quickly. So, is there a way to prolong its shelf life? Yes, there are two ways given below.
- Freeze the lemon curd and it will stay for as long as a year without any impact on its texture. Isn’t it surprising?
- Store it in a can to prolong its shelf life up to 3 months or so stored in the fridge. Please do not keep it on the shelf.
How To Prepare It?
You will need the ingredients given below.
- Eggs – 4
- Lemon juice – ½ cup
- Granulated sugar – 1 cup
- Salted butter cut in small pieces – 5 tbsp
- Lemon zest finely grated – 2 tbsp
- Cut the butter into small pieces and keep the lemon zest ready. Place a mesh strainer over a bowl ready.
- Take a metal bowl or double boiler add some water and keep the flame low. Now whisk the eggs with lemon juice and sugar. Whisk it continuously till the mixture turns thick and looks like curd. This may take about 10 minutes; then remove and then put through the strainer. Whisk the butter in this mixture by adding few pieces at a time. Then add lemon zest to it and stir well until blended.
- Place a piece of plastic wrap to cover the mixture and slowly it will thicken as it cools.
- Take the cooled lemon curd into a covered container and store it in the refrigerator.
Isn’t it very easy to prepare lemon curd?