The weather warmed up considerably last weekend and the lemons were practically serenading me every time I opened the refrigerator door. So, this week I made fresh, delightfully creamy and smooth lemon curd from organic, unwaxed lemons. Making this very simple spread was easier than I thought, AND gave me an opportunity to use my candy thermometer, which feels special in and of itself. I didn't have time to make the fresh scones I fantasized about for 15 seconds, and opted for a quick fix instead. Strawberries. They were the perfect vehicle - possibly too much tarty fruitiness for some of you, but I loved it and the whole experience felt that much more like summer. Since we live 5 miles from the strawberry capital (Carlsbad, CA), they are readily available...certainly not anywhere near their best, but still good. Other ways to enjoy: spoon over basic Scottish shortbread biscuits, spread over toast, pour into your favorite tart shell (easy recipe here), or enjoy alone with a dollop of fresh unsweetened whipped cream.
4 organic, unwaxed lemons
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1 stick butter cut into four pieces
3/4 cup sugar
Whisk together juice, zest, sugar, and eggs in a heat-safe bowl and add butter. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and cook, all the while whisking, until thickened and smooth. When a candy thermometer reads 160°F., (about 5 minutes), remove curd from heat and strain through using a fine sieve strainer into a bowl. Use a spoon or rubber spatula to squeeze out as much as you can. If you plan on using a jar (this recipe makes enough for two small to medium jars), pour immediately and keep in the fridge for up to a week.
Lemon curd also freezes well, so if you don't think you'll use it all, save some for later!
Makes 1-1/2 cups.