I love lemons.
I love the taste, the smell, even the color.
Lemons make me smile.
And lemon curd is just the best. I hate that it’s called curd though. The word curd just sounds like sour milk. Not the delicious sweet, sour nectar that it really is.
Once you get your hands on some lemon curd there are so many things you can do with it. From pies and tarts to cookies, bread and cakes. Or just eat it on a biscuit or slice of bread.
But finding Lemon curd around here isn’t easy. The first time I went looking for it, I checked all the local grocery stores, even Walmart, nothing. My mom finally found me some in a little tea shop. Close to $6.00 for a small jar of this deliciousness.
I knew you could make it but I’d just never looked into it.
Then the other day I was doing a search about using bottled lemon juice and I came upon this post from A Gardener’s Table. It went into great detail about using real lemon juice, fresh squeezed versus bottled. A great article. But almost at the end was a link to the Oregon State University Extension Service for canning Lemon Curd.
Canning Lemon Curd. I love to can things.
Click. Reading through the instructions, I can do this. And the best part? At least for me, anyway, they recommend using bottled Lemon juice! Yay!!!!! I’m not into fresh squeezing 15-20 lemons just to get 1 cup of juice. And since it’s bottled juice, which I always have on hand, I’ll be able to make this any time I feel like it. A rainy day, in the dead of winter.
And Lemons make me smile, lemon curd makes me smile even more.
yields 4 half pint jars
2 1/2 cups super fine sugar *
1 cup bottled lemon Juice
3/4 cups unsalted butter, cut and chilled
7 large egg yolks
4 large whole eggs
*If you don’t have super fine sugar, just place granulated sugar in a food processor for about 1 minute.
Prepare jars and keep hot until ready to use. I place hot water in mine and then just before using place in the microwave for 30 seconds to make sure they’re still hot.
Fill canner with enough water to cover filled jars by 1-2 inches. Heat water to 180 degrees but not higher. You want water to come to a boil after prepared jars are added as part of the processing.
You’ll be using a double boiler to make this. If you don’t have a double boiler just use a larger mixing bowl on top of your sauce pan. Heat water in your bottom pan, making sure water will not touch the bottom of your double boiler. In the top of your double boiler, on the counter, combine egg yolks and whole eggs. Whisk till well combined.
Add in sugar a little at a time, whisking well, till all added and combined.
Add in lemon juice.
Stir till combined and smooth.
Place double boiler on top of saucepan with the boiling water and add in chilled butter.
Stirring with a rubber spatula or spoon, cook until butter is melted and temperature reaches 170 degrees. It took mine about 15 minute to reach temperature.
When you get close to temperature, it will magically start to thicken.
Once you reach the temperature of 170 degrees, remove double boiler from pan and place on counter. Stir for about 5 minutes until you have the consistency of pudding.
Reheat jars in the microwave if needed. Fill jars leaving 1/2 inch head space.
Be sure to wipe rims and sides to remove any “drips”
Check temperature of the water on your canner, making sure it’s at 180 degrees.
Place jars in canner, once water is boiling, continue to process for 15 minutes at 0-1,000 feet, 20 minutes at 1,001-6,000 feet and 25 minutes for above 6,000 feet.
Remove from canner when time is up and let sit for 12-24 hours then check for seals.
Canned lemon curd will keep for 3-4 months.
I’ll be posting some recipes this week of things you can make with your freshly made Lemon Curd. And if you’re looking for ideas for all those egg whites, why not make some Meringues. Just don’t use them all. You’ll want to save some. Trust me.
I’m linking up at some of these great parties and Carnival of Home Preserving.
Update June 1, 2012
There has been a lot of discussion as to whether it is safe to can Lemon Curd in the method used above.
My Original source for the recipe was found here from the Oregon State University:
The same recipe appears from the National Center for Food Preservation, University of Georgia
And there is an article from the NCFP UGA for Freezing Lemon Curd here
I have sent an E-mail to the University of Georgia Extension Service asking for clarification on the issue of safety and will also contact my local extension agent to see if he can get me a speedier answer. I certainly don’t want to share bad/mis-information just my love of canning and Lemon Curd.