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How do I? ...Freeze

Freezing

Freezer Lemon Curd

  • 2 cups superfine sugar*
  • cup lemon zest (freshly zested)
  • 1 cup bottled lemon juice
  • cup unsalted butter, chilled, cut into approximately ¾" pieces
  • 7 large egg yolks
  • 4 large whole eggs
Special Equipment Needed: lemon zester, stainless steel balloon whisk, 1½ quart double boiler** (the top double boiler pan should be at least 1½-quart volume), strainer, kitchen thermometer measuring at least up to 180°F, glass or stainless steel medium mixing bowl, silicone spatula or plastic or wooden spoon, and 1 quart capacity freezer container(s).

Procedure:

   1.   Wash freezer container(s) with warm, soapy water. Rinse well and dry. Keep covered or upside down on clean surface to prevent contamination while you make your lemon curd.

   2. Combine the sugar and lemon zest in a small bowl, stir to mix, and set aside about 30 minutes. Pre-measure the lemon juice and prepare the chilled butter pieces.

   3. Heat water in the bottom pan of the double boiler until it boils gently. The water should not boil vigorously or touch the bottom of the top double boiler pan or bowl in which the curd is to be cooked. Steam produced will be sufficient for the cooking process to occur.

   4. In the top of the double boiler, on the counter top or table, beat egg yolks and whole eggs thoroughly but lightly with the whisk. Slowly whisk in the sugar and zest, blending until well mixed so that the mixture is not lumpy. Blend in the lemon juice and then add the butter pieces to the mixture.

   5. Place the top of the double boiler over boiling water in the bottom pan. Stir gently but continuously with a silicone spatula, or plastic or wooden spoon, to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Continue cooking until the mixture reaches a temperature of 170°F. Use a thermometer to monitor the temperature.

   6. Remove the double boiler pan from the stove and place on a protected surface, such as a dish cloth or towel on the counter top. Continue to stir gently until the curd thickens (about 5 minutes). Strain curd through a mesh strainer, into a glass or stainless steel bowl; discard collected zest. Allow the curd to cool to room temperature. To prevent a 'surface skin' from forming while it cools, place a clean piece of plastic food wrap down onto the surface of the curd or cover the bowl. Fill cooled curd into freezer container(s), leaving ½-inch headspace, and freeze immediately.

Shelf Life: Prepared lemon curd can be frozen for up to 1 year without quality changes when thawed. To thaw, place container in a refrigerator at 40°F or lower for 24 hours before intended use. After thawing, consume within 4 weeks.


Preparation Notes:

* If superfine sugar is not available, run granulated sugar through a grinder or food processor for 1 minute, let settle, and use in place of superfine sugar.

** If a double boiler is not available, a substitute can be made with a large bowl or saucepan that can fit partway down into a saucepan of a smaller diameter. If the bottom pan has a larger diameter, the top bowl or pan should have a handle(s) that can rest on the rim of the lower pan.


Variation:

For Lime Curd, use the same recipe but substitute 1 cup bottled lime juice and cup fresh lime zest for the lemon juice and zest.



Developed at The University of Georgia, Athens, for the National Center for Home Food Preservation. Released by Elizabeth L. Andress, Ph.D., Department of Foods and Nutrition, College of Family and Consumer Sciences. March 2004.

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