Whilst home made lemon curd is a joy – a glistening, golden gloop of silky refreshing tang perfectly offset by delicate sweetness – curds don’t have to be just confined to lemons. Indeed making a fruit curd is a great way to use up the spoils of our native summer harvest.
Damsons are enjoying their brief but glorious seasonal moment right now and are perfect for making a curd. In fact any fruit with a tart tangy flavour will make a beautiful curd; redcurrants, blackcurrants; blackberries, raspberries, gooseberries, even rhubarb.
Fruit curds are not that hard to make, unlike jam there is no faffing about getting to setting point. The only downside is that it is not really a preserve. It will keep in a jar in the fridge for a week. However once tasted, the chances of it lasting a whole week is nigh impossible. We doubt that there will be any left after an hour!
There are easier ways to make curd but have a go at doing it this way. This will make a wonderfully smooth, silky curd free from the graininess of some recipes.
How to serve? It’s up to you, but we love it in a Victoria Sponge, a jam tart, or – and this is an old family favourite – spread on a scotch pancake. Bliss
Perfect fruit curd (Makes about 400ml)
225ml juice from your fruits
225g white sugar
6 eggs (3 whole eggs and 3 yolks)
Pinch of salt
100g softened butter, cubed
Juice the fruit that you have chosen to remove as much of the pulp as possible and of course any stones, seeds or pips. If you don’t have a juicer strain it overnight through muslin sheet. In the case of damsons, rhubarb and gooseberries we always gently heat the fruit in a pan with 100ml water first to soften them up and release the juice. You’ll need 225ml juice. Note: if you have heated it in a pan make sure that it is cooled before you move on to the next stage.
Whisk the eggs into the sugar followed by the juice, a little at a time, until fully incorporated.
Pour the mix into a heavy based pan and heat on a low heat stirring all the time. The idea is to gently heat the mixture until it thickens and becomes smooth, glossy and as thick as custard. It will take about 10 minutes. Danger: Heat too fast and you’ll create fruit flavoured scrambled egg.
Whisk in the salt and pour into a food processor or blender if you have one. Allow the mix to cool for five minutes.
Blend on a low speed for 30 seconds, then start dropping in the butter, a little at a time, still with the motor on, until smooth.
Transfer to sterilised jars.
Room Forty is an award winning mobile Afternoon Tea emporium and baking school based in Warrington and founded by Jennifer Perry.
Room Forty won a Silver Award in the Tiptree World Bread Awards held at Westminster Hall, London in October 2017. The Awards represent the pinnacle of bread baking excellence for craft and artisan bakers. The Awards were judged on a blind tasting by 48 master and craft bakers.
Room Forty was also declared Hospitality Provider of the Year at the Warrington Business Awards in June 2018.