My obsession with lemon curd began many many many years ago with the amazing lemon and lime curds made by American Spoon Foods (purveyors of the most impeccably flavored preserves you've ever encountered). Growing up in Petoskey, their products were staples in our household and no trip downtown was complete without stopping in to sample their latest creations.
While I could go on and on about the wonders of Spoon, the lemon curd has long been the one product I can't resist eating straight from the jar. Spoonful after spoonful after spoonful. When not in northern Michigan, I would buy other lemon curds from the shelf at the grocery store, but nothing could compare to the fresh creamy citrus of American Spoon Foods' curd.
The first time I made lemon curd in my own kitchen, it was a total game changer. I discovered the reason I was so obsessed with that particular curd - it was the closest I could get to the flavor of freshly made lemon curd without actually making it myself. The amazing news is that curds are SUPER easy to make at home, all it takes is about 15 minutes and some constant stirring! Serious danger for this curd-lover.
The citrus selection at my local grocery spot, New Seasons, is currently bordering on out of control. They're boasting 60 plus varieties of citrus, and that endless bounty of color is beyond magical during this cold, grey, and rainy time in Portland. Just as the mid-winter blues are starting to set in, I can't help but get excited to explore the endless opportunities of citrus flavors! I wanted to start with something classic - the meyer lemon.
Meyer lemons were created by crossing a mandarin orange with a classic lemon, gifting us with a sweeter and more deeply flavored type of lemon. I consider these to be the perfect citrus for baking (although, there may be another 50 varieties to explore this winter!), as well as for curd-making. These days meyer lemons can be found in most grocery stores with an ample produce section for a few months each winter starting in December.
I'll be honest - when the meyer lemon season arrives, I go all meyer all the time until they're no longer available. Regular lemons just don't measure up in my mind!
This recipe is specifically written to make use of meyer lemons. If you're not able to find them, you can still make an absolutely amazing curd from regular lemons. Just be sure to increase the sugar to about 1/2 cup as your juice won't hold as much sweetness as meyer lemon juice.
Meyer Lemon Curd
1/2 cup meyer lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
pinch of salt
- In a double boiler over medium high heat or a bowl placed over a pot of simmering water, whisk together the lemon juice, sugar, egg yolks, and eggs until thoroughly combined.
- Add butter and whisk continuously. The butter will melt, and after a bit more whisking the mixture will begin to thicken. Continue whisking until your whisk leaves clear lines in the curd as you stir.
- Remove from heat, and strain the curd through a fine mesh strainer.
- Store your lemon curd in the refrigerator, and eat it within a few weeks (though good luck having it last more than a few days!).
Serving: I've definitely given away that my favorite way to eat lemon curd is straight from the jar, spoonful after spoonful... but there are so many wonderful things to be done with it! Spread it on toast, serve it with scones, fill your cake layers or individual tarts (check out my full-size lemon tart recipe for the appropriate curd for filling tarts you'll be slicing).