Jammy Bodger | Top Tips for Making Curd

Top Tips for Making Curd

June 7, 2014

Jammy Bodger Recipe1    Think beyond the humble lemon. You can make curd with nearly any fruit but the tarter the better. Simply make a thick pure, sieve it if its pippy and then add the other ingredients. (That said lemon curd is still the original and the best!)

2   Add less of everything than you think. You can always add more sugar, butter and egg but if you add too much and you overwhelm it’s fruity essence then your curd will be a boring flop.

3   As always think seasonal and local.

4   As with all preserves use the best quality ingredients you can. Each individual ingredient contributes to the flavour. So free range if possible organic eggs, local butter and fruit that is in season and from as close to home and as fresh as possible. 

5 Add the eggs last and  a little bit at a time and sieve. Better a tart and fruity slightly runny curd than a sturdy over eggy one (my recent foray with rhubarb & elderflower jam which

Making blackcurrant curd

Sieve in the egg into your blackcurrant puree

tasted totally of goose eggs has led me to this weighty conclusion). By sieving the eggs you can avoid any weird stringy-ness.6 My curd has curdled what can I do? I say the curd but I mean the eggs, as its after adding the eggs that the curdling occurs. Curdling can happen if the curd gets too:

  • Hot if the mixing bowl touches the bottom of the saucepan or sits on the water or if the water is boiling manically not simmering.
  • Acidic if you’ve increased the fruit too much then it’s an acid and egg shock.
  • Or for some reason you will never know but you want it fixing.
  • Sometimes it just looks like its curdled as the butter hasn’t finished melting.

Heroically save your curd by taking the curd bowl off the heat and whisking vigorously until the mixture comes back together again and then continue to cook as usual. Or adding another egg might help rebalance the amount of tart juice but really it’s just whisk, whisk, whisk until it remember it’s a curd. If by any horrible chance it doesn’t come back together, either sieve your curd before potting or make some kind of steamed pudding and claim it curdled whilst cooking.

7 My curd isn’t thick enough? Still cooking?
The curd only thickens as little more as it cools. ItLemon Curd really needs to coat the back of the wooden spoon and be dripping off the spoon like a very thick white sauce. If:

  • It’s been 20 mins since you started heating the curd after adding the eggs and it’s not thickening check to see if your water is simmering fast enough
  • The water in your saucepan is just occasionally bubbling up the heat needs to be increased it should be just below a boil think lively.

Then take the curd bowl off the heat and sieve in another egg yolk, stir in well, then put back on the heat for another 5 mins. Any luck?? You could add another egg yolk but taste the curd first if its already creamy, will you like it as much if it gets creamier or would it be better off a little runny the decision is yours. It could be that your fruit has been juicier than normal so you can add a couple of extra egg yolks with no detriment to the flavour, which is why making curds is a bit more suck it and see. This is good though as once you’ve made a couple of curds you can alter the recipes to suit you.

After cooking? If the curd is too runny after you’ve potted it just keep it in the fridge as the cold thickens its. But if you need the curd to be thick I.e. for a cake filling, then thicken the curd by stirring in a cornflour paste made by mixing corn flour (a very fine grain flour) with a little cold water to form a paste. Curd Jar

8   Keep your curd in the fridge it keep better like this (for up to 6 weeks) and lets face it somethings just taste better straight from the fridge. Make curd in small quantities and consume immediately  I never struggle with this. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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"The Jammy Bodger‘s Guide to Making Jam" is jam packed (sorry couldn‘t resist) with seasonal, easy to follow recipes for making jam, jelly, chutney & curd. Click here to look inside & find out more.

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