It’s getting close to Christmas, so now, I have to get busy and start making good things to eat. Today, I made Lemon Jam. It’s really called Lemon Curd, but I just cannot stand to say it. It doesn’t sound right. Curds are in sour milk and cottage cheese. It is more of a spread or jam. I used it for a filling in a vanilla lemon cake. Lemon Jam is good on scones, biscuits, crepes, English muffins, and toast. I have even used it as a filling inside lemon cupcakes. I’m sure it is good on all sorts of things. I’m thinking it would be yummy drizzled on a slice of pound cake. I’ve been tasting the jam all day.
I found this recipe by Ina Garten, from The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook. I made a few slight changes affecting just the ease of preparation. The taste is all Ina’s. I have a picture of how I used it as a filling between the layers of the vanilla lemon cake. I piped an icing dam around the edge and then spread the jam onto the layer. The icing dam keeps the jam from oozing out the edge of the cake after you put the other layer on top. Wish I could take credit for that little tip, but I can’t. However, I can pass the tip on to you guys.
If you had a lemon lover on your gift list, Lemon Jam would make such a nice gift. It will keep in the fridge for about ten days. Mine never has stuck around that long.
adapted, just a little bit, from the Lemon Curd recipe by Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook (1999)
3 lemons, all the juice and all of the zest
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 large eggs, at room temperature
In the mixing bowl, mix the zest and the granulated sugar on low speed. You want the sugar and the zest to mix very well. Add the soft butter and mix on low until well incorporated. Keeping the mixer on low speed, add the eggs one at a time. Then add the salt and the lemon juice. Mix until combined.
Pour the mixture in a 2 quart saucepan and cook on medium/low heat until it reaches 170 degrees, stirring constantly. This will take about 20 minutes and it will thicken. Remove from the heat, strain, and cool or refrigerate before using. It should keep about ten days in the refrigerator.
Here is why we strain:
Straining gets all the used up zest and any eggy stuff out of the way. You will be so glad you did this.