Lemon Curd is a quick and easy dessert sauce that’s perfect to ice shortbread, fill a tart, or grace a pancake. (It’s a shame the name sounds yucky.)
If you like lemons, this is the good stuff. I have an old Fannie Farmer cookbook that gushes a bit over lemon curd. “It is also good just on toast.”
Today, I just wanted a glazing sauce for some shortbread cookies.
This is another one of those recipes that’s as much or more a technique than a recipe.
You will need a saucepan, a grater, a whisk, and a sieve / strainer. I like to use a non-stick saucepan so I also use my favorite silicone-coated whisk so I don’t scratch the pan. (I’ve used nylon whisks but they’re not sturdy enough for my liking.)
Zest one or both of the lemons with the grater so you have at least a couple of teaspoons and set aside for later.
Juice the lemons. You should have about 1/2 cup of juice. Either use a reamer (like the one in the picture) or even just a fork to make sure you get all the juice.
To the pan add the juice, three eggs plus one egg yolk, 1/2 cup sugar, and a stick of butter cut into pats (if unsalted also add 1/4 teaspoon salt to the mix).
Over medium heat, shooting for the gentlest of simmer, continuously whisking the mix while it cooks the eggs. You do not want scrambled eggs so keep it moving. You don’t have to go crazy fast, just constantly. After 5 minutes or so it will thicken up and you’re done. I use the old back-of-the-spoon test (see the picture).
Turn off the heat and strain the mix to remove any bits of cooked egg. If you have a lot more than what I did you cooked it over too high a heat. You’ll get it better next time, no worries. Conversely, if it took a lot longer than 5 minutes you cooked it over too low a heat.
Last, stir in the zest from earlier.
Cover it with a lid or some plastic and refrigerate until you’re ready for it.
Lemon Curd is a simple and delicious dessert sauce perfect for scones, shortbread, and even pancakes. This makes almost 2 cups.
- 1/2 cup lemon juice About 2 average-sized lemons.
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 large eggs +
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1/2 cup butter Cut into pats.
- 1 pinch salt If your butter is unsalted.
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
Zest and juice the lemons.
Add everything except the zest to a saucepan and whisk together.
While continuing to whisk, cook over a medium heat / gentle simmer, until it thickens. About 5 minutes or so.
Remove from the heat and strain it to remove any cooked egg bits.
Stir in the lemon zest.
Cover and refrigerate.
This should keep sealed and refrigerated for several days.