Lemon curd (also known as lemon honey) is so easy to make that if you haven’t made it before, you should really give it a go. It can be cooked in a saucepan, but this microwave method is super quick and easy.
Although, I have lemon trees at home, they won’t be winning any beauty competitions with their gnarled, imperfect skins. Their appearance kind of makes it difficult sometimes to get good-looking zest - and we all want good looking zest don’t we? Well, yes we do in lemon curd, otherwise we get flecks of green and black in the jar, which ain’t so pretty. So when a bag of unblemished lemons came into my being, I knew right away I would be making lemon curd and preserved lemons. I was assured the lemons were organic (really? They looked so perfect?).
For a long time I only purchased lemon curd at craft fairs where little old ladies had probably been making it for years. Since I discovered it’s simple to make, I’ve been making it at home. This recipe comes from a grandmother, a former colleague, and is just delicious.
There are lots of things you can do with lemon curd. The most temptingly obvious is spooning it direct into one’s mouth. In fact, it’s quite likely you’ll eat the whole jar. I thought I was the only one with this weak trait, but a colleague told me she’d been doing the very same thing.
Assuming you resist the temptation, try spreading it on toast, bagels, or fill sweet pastry tarts with it. It’s divine swirled through vanilla ice cream or as a filling in sponges, muffins and cupcakes. I dolloped a teaspoonful on a slice of lemon, banana and sultana cake to lift its’ slightly dry texture. Or just package up the jars pretty and give as a gift – the recipient will love you forever.
Next time, I’ll be writing about the lemon louise slice I made using the lemon curd.
6 eggs, well beaten
125g (¼ lb) butter, cut in chunks
500g (1lb) sugar
Grated rind of 2 lemons
Juice of 3 lemons, strained
Wash and sterilize about 4 or 5 glass jars (how many you will need depends on the size of the jars – I tend to use smaller ones). I sterilize by washing the jars and lids in hot, soapy water, then rinse the jars while still wet and put them (without the lids) in the microwave for one minute. Use boiling water from a kettle to pour over the lids to sterilize.
Place all the ingredients in a large microwaveable jug and stir. Heat the mixture for 30 seconds in the microwave and stir again. It will start off looking lumpy but should be smooth once heated and combined. Continue microwaving in 30-second bursts, stirring in between, until the mixture has reached the correct consistency. You should be able to coat the back of a spoon with the curd. Don’t overcook as it will set too hard.
Use the jug to pour the lemon curd into jars. Leave to cool, then seal.
The recipe was given to me in imperial measurements so I have added metric measures.