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Blood Orange Curd

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Blood orange season is here, y'all!  I was so excited when I walked into my local grocery store and saw these lovelies beaming up at me.  I grabbed about four of those produce bags and filled each one of them all the way up.  I'm sure the other shoppers thought I was crazy, but I really can't help myself.  I've found so many uses for these crimson-colored fruit - from cocktails to marinades, and even frosting.  I have a ton of plans for them, but the first order of business was to whip up some blood orange curd. 

A curd is typically a creamy spread that's created by cooking an acidic juice (like lemons or oranges) with egg yolks and sugar.  The majority of the recipes add butter at the end for extra richness.  So the citrus and the sugar marry to provide the flavor, and the egg yolks thicken the mixture. 

I love blood orange curd because it's the perfect balance between tart and sweet. It's silky deliciousness will be sure to brighten these cold winter days and have you day-dreaming about warmer weather.  Plus, you can't help but love the awesome peach color.  Spread it over your toast in the mornings, use it to make a cheesecake (which I plan to do ASAP), add a dollop to your pancakes, or just spoon it right out of the bowl if you're feeling a bit rebellious. Oh, and it's also a good way to recycle the egg yolks that you have left over from another recipe.

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Start by zesting three large, clean blood oranges, making sure not to zest any of the pith. Then, squeeze out as much of the juice as you can - you want to get about 1/3 cup of juice.  If they don't yield that much, add cold water until it reaches the desired amount. 

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Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together in a heat-proof bowl until the mixture becomes smooth. 

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Next, pour the 1/3 cup of juice and all of the blood orange zest into the egg mixture and continue to whisk until smooth.  Resist the temptation to spoon some out at this stage.   Then, transfer the bowl to the stove and place it over a pot of simmering water. 

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The whisking didn't stop in the last step.  You want to continue whisking the mixture until it coats the back of the spoon.  Again, resist the urge to lick it.  

Once your curd getss thick like the picture above, remove the bowl from the heat and whisk in the cubes of chilled butter.   Pour the curd into a clean container, cover it, and refrigerate.  

With all this whisking, there's no need to go to the gym.  You'll have guns of steel in no time! 

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Blood Orange Curd

Recipe Adapted from Alton Brown

 

Ingredients:

  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 blood oranges, zested and juiced
  • 1 stick butter, cubed and chilled

Directions:

  1. Add water to a saucepan until it comes up to about 1-2 inches up the side.  Bring the water to a simmer over medium-high heat. 
  2. Combine the egg yolks and sugar in a medium-sized metal bowl (I used the bowl of my stand mixer) and whisk until smooth. 
  3. Juice the blood oranges, and if necessary, add enough cold water so that it reaches 1/3 cup.  
  4. Add juice and zest to egg mixture and whisk until smooth again. 
  5. Once the water reaches a simmer, reduce the heat to  low and place the bowl on top of the pan.  Make sure that the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water. 
  6. Whisk the mixture until thickened - about 8 minutes or until the mixture coats the back of a spoon.
  7. Remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the butter one cube at a time, allowing each addition to melt before adding another piece. 
  8. Pour the curd into a container and cover.  The curd can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

 

Stay sweet!

Randi