Today, my posting was inspired by Fired-up Cooking. She has some great ideas on her blog, run on over and get some ideas for gourmet foods you cam make on an open fire! Just love her blog!
Last night I woke up at about 1:45am…which seems to be my new party trick, which I hate BTW! And I started thinking about lemon curd…well the thought started with lemon meringue, and how its been a while since I did a good lemon meringue…but then I started going into the thought of although a classic, it was a slightly more boring option…then I though about Inspirations blog with regards to her challenges, which I have not been able to get around to doing…and I fell asleep again…logging on this morning I saw Fire-up Cooking’s home made lemon curd…I knew exactly what I wanted to do…between Fire-Up & Inspiration, I was going to make a lemon…something, with some sort of sweet something like tart…and this is what I came up with…
Citrus Curd Sweet Pastry Tart
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Double sift the flour and salt, set aside
Put the butter in a mixer and beat until softened
Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
Bit by bit add the beaten egg, beating just until incorporated. (beat at a low speed, you do not want to over mix, otherwise your butter will separate)
Add flour all at once and mix just until it forms a ball. (don’t over mix, you don’t want the pastry hard when baked)
Flatten dough, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for about 30 minutes
6 large eggs
80 ml fresh lemon juice (using the bottled lemon juice will not give the same result)
80ml fresh orange juice
300g white sugar
8 tbsp unsalted butter (room temperature) cut into small pieces
1 tsp lemon zest – finely chopped
2 tsp orange zest – finely chopped
In a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and lemon juice until blended.
Cook, whisking constantly (to prevent it from curdling), until the mixture becomes pale in color and quite thick, this will take an average of about 10 minutes (done on a gas stove, so please watch your mixture rather than judging it by 10 minutes)
Remove from heat and immediately pour through a fine strainer to remove any lumps.
Cut the butter into small pieces and whisk into the mixture until the butter has melted.
Add the zest, cover, and let cool to room temperature before filling the pastry crust.
Now, I just assembled the two together, which was rather easy! You will need a pie / tart pan with removable bottom. I used my quiche pans, they work perfectly!
Roll out your pastry on a lightly floured surface; keep lifting the pastry so it does not stick to your working surface. Gently lay pastry in your pan and press into the bottom and sides. Roll rolling pin over top again to get rid of any extra pastry. Prick bottom of dough. Cover and refrigerate for about 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 190 C and place rack in center of oven.
Bake blind for about 10 minutes, or until you notice the crust is dry and lightly golden.
Let cool down completely before you add the filling
Once the crust is cooled down, fill with the lemon curd mixture, cool in a fridge until ready to serve.
Now…I thought I would give you a few tips…and useless info…so your weekend starts with a burst of knowledge!
When working with lemons, they should always be at room temperature for you to get the maximum amount of juice out. Alternatively, just place in microwave for a few seconds.
Thick, bumpy textured cold lemons give the maximum amount of zest.
The lemon Zest (yellow outer rind of the lemon) contains the fruit’s flavor and perfume.
Curd is often confused with pie filling, or with a meringue filling…however, its neither, as a curd contains higher portions of juice, thus making the flavor much more intense.
The curds texture is much smoother, and creamier than a pie filling.
Traditionally curd, which originates from England, is a dessert spread, it should be served with scones, or bread.