My year got off to an awesome start when I realized that Marisa of Food in Jars was hosting another food preservation challenge. The challenge for the month of January was to create a preserve using citrus. The citrus challenge in 2017 where I attempted to make marmalade didn’t go very well. This year I decided to capture a bit of southern sunshine in a jar of Lemon Curd, instead of revisiting the marmalade disaster.
However, this has been a busy month for me. I usually enjoy the process of slowly and carefully cooking something complicated but this month my time (and energy) is at a premium. I was happy to stumble on this recipe to make Lemon Curd using my microwave.
Microwave Lemon Curd
from Small-Batch Preserving by Ellie Topp and Margret Howard
Makes about 1 1/2 cups.
- 3 lemons
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- The original recipe called for the zest of one lemon. I don’t like the texture of lemon zest in lemon curd. Instead of zesting the lemons, I peeled them with a potato peeler and set them aside.
2. Cut the lemons in half and squeeze each half over a strainer (or your hand) suspended over a 1 litre (4 cup) microwave safe container.
3. In a separate, microwave safe container, beat the two eggs.
4. In the 1 litre microwave safe container add the butter and the sugar.
5. Microwave uncovered for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes or until the butter is melted and the mixture is hot.
6. Stirring constantly, slowly pour the hot lemon juice/butter/sugar mixture into the eggs.
7. Microwave on medium (50%) for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes stirring every 30 seconds or until the mixture begins to thicken. DO NOT LET THE MIXTURE COME TO A BOIL.
8. Pour into a clean jar and store in the fridge for 2 weeks or freeze.
9. Instead of throwing the lemon peels in the trash, use them to make:
Bonus Lemon Extract
- Place the left over lemon peels in a clean jar.
- Cover with cheap vodka
- Put the lid on the jar.
- Keep in a cool dark cupboard for at least a month
- Strain and bottle
This recipe was fast and easy. It made only 1 1/2 cups but this is perfect for me, as I am the only one in my household who will be eating this lovely jar of sunshine. It only keeps in the fridge for about 2 weeks allowing me just enough time to finish the jar. The only complaint I have is that I would have preferred a sweeter curd. Next time I make it, I will add more sugar. Over all, this recipe is a winner. I’m glad I gave it a shot.
This is how much I spent to make my jar of tasty lemon curd.
|Sugar||$0.14 / 100g (walmart.ca)||1/4 cup (50g)||$0.07|
|Butter||$5.69 / pound (2 cups)||1/4 cup||$0.71|
|Eggs||$3.69 / dozen||2||$0.61|
|Total (about 350ml) :||$4.57|
Currently, at my little store, lemon curd is on sale for $4.99 for 500ml. It looks like I really didn’t save much money making my own. However, I’m sure that my homemade version is much tastier than store bought and I’m sure it contains fewer questionable ingredients.
I didn’t price out how much it cost to make the Lemon Extract. I used maybe 1/4 cup of vodka left over from my girls’ weekend in September and the lemon peels were saved from the trash (compost). A quick look online at Walmart.ca reveals that they sell lemon extract for $3.76 for 43 ml. I estimate that I will get a little more than that. Still, it’s money in my pocket and it cuts down on my food waste.
What I Learnt:
I pretty much only use my microwave to heat up leftovers or my rice bag before I go to bed. I would normally turn my nose up at using my microwave to make something like lemon curd. I’m glad that my limited time and energy encouraged me to try something new. I might even consider using my microwave for other things. 2019 is a brand new year.
Will I Do This Again:
Oh yea. Most certainly but with more sugar. This recipe is a keeper.
Check back next month when the challenge is fermentation.
The labels I used for my jars can be found at https://www.jamlabelizer.com/