Of Friends and Fruit Curds
I met M two weeks ago at HOBY WLC. M is from the UK and has an adorable accent. When asked to give an idea for something to make, he suggested lemon curd tarts with condensed milk ice cream. I couldn’t help but think to myself how undeniably British this dessert sounded. Lemon and other fruit curds find their origin in 19th-20th century England after all. To be quite honest, I’d never really had a fondness for curds. They’re just not my thing usually. When paired with an almond graham cracker crust, vanilla bean condensed milk ice cream, and raspberries however, the flavor becomes impeccably irresistable. You try- you’ll see.
taken from Baking With Julia, by Dorie Greenspan
4 large eggs
1 C sugar
2/3 C fresh lemon juice (I used 4 large lemons)
grated zest of one lemon, done on a microplane
1/2 stick butter (2 oz), cut into 8 pieces, room temperature
Graham Cracker Crust (or your favorite tart shell)
Set up a double boiler with a pot and the bowl from your mixer: The pot should be just the right size for your mixing bowl to fit inside without the bottom of it touching the pot. The water in the pot should be low enough not to touch the bottom of the mixing bowl when it simmers (the idea is to prevent direct heat with the curd, all heat transferred should be carried by steam).
Place the pot of water on the stove and bring to a light simmer.
In the mixing bowl with a whisk attachment, whip the eggs and sugar at high speed until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. While whisking, add in the lemon juice and zest.
Set the bowl into the pot over the stove and cook the mixture, constantly whisking, making sure to lightly whisk against the bottom and all sides of the bowl to avoid scrambling the eggs. Cook and whisk until the mixture thickens, like a loose pudding or custard. It should be smooth. This will take several minutes.
Remove the bowl from the pot to the counter, turn off the heat and whisk the butter into the curd, piece by piece. Pour the curd into the tart shell, spreading it evenly. Allow the tart to set at room temperature. Once the curd is stable enough to safely transport the tart, place it in the fridge to completely settle it before slicing.
Beat heavy cream with an electric mixer until it begins to thicken. Add in vanilla and continue beating until a light whipped cream forms. Gradually pour in condensed milk and vanilla paste and keep beating until mixture thickens to a nice cream. Put in the freezer for at least four hours; overnight is best.