Saturday was a good day indeed… life handed me Meyer lemons! Or rather, Trader Joe’s handed me lemons. Or at least put them where I would see them and then pay for them, and THEN they were handed to me.
And then. They were mine. Citrusy goodness, miney mine mine. (And Kira’s. Sharing is caring!)
At which point I was confronted with a dilemma. What to do with these rare gorgeous lemon specimens?! Since Meyer lemons have such a ridiculously short season, I wanted to do something with them that would stick around for awhile. But what?! Soooo many options. Thus it happened that while I was dutifully thesising this morning (which, by the way, is 54 pages and winding down, hooray!) that some devious part of my brain escaped to Meyer lemon land to ponder the myriad possibilities of four lemons and a relaxed Sunday at home. At which point it apparently decided that lemon curd was the way to go! Mmmm, good work, brain. (Though I must remember to chastise it for skipping out on me, and leaving me to thesis with only partial brain cells. Psh. If I have to concentrate, EVERY cell up there has to be involved, it’s only fair)
So after I finished up writing for today, lemon curd happened. And oh man, am I glad it did… there was not a drop spilled that wasn’t immediately swiped up and eaten. And the food processor that was very thoroughly “cleaned”… and the spoons…. and the spatulas… Well. You get the idea. I’ve loved lemon curd since I went to high tea with my lovely Mutti, and we found ways to put it on everything! Now all I need is some clotted cream and scones… hmm.. next weekend’s project?!
BUT. Surprise, surprise! Lemon curd only used TWO of my lemons. Which meant that I had an unexpected bonus of TWO MORE! So I made Sunday muffins… with lemons! (and chia seeds, natch) I’m sure they’ll be fab with the lemon curd. And then, when I was done with these, I realized that I still have one lemon left! Wow. This is even better than dead banana surplus… What to do?? Something to ponder in the next few days :)
Meyer Lemon Curd
Curd. Such a *ahem* LOVELY word. Like, move one letter and it spells crud. But hey, don’t knock it till you try it: this is good enough to eat with a spoon. Oh wait, I already did that… Your turn!
From the Pastry Affair, here! I got… half a peanut butter jar’s worth?! Sorry for the inexact measurements… I would guess between one cup and 1.5 cups.
- 1/2 c sugar (I used turbinado, which is why my lemon curd isn’t bright yellow)
- zest of 2 Meyer lemons
- 1/2 c Meyer lemon juice (I used the juice of the 2 I zested)
- 2 eggs
- 4 tbsp butter (Mine was salted), softened and cut into chunks
In the bowl of a double boiler, combine sugar and lemon zest, and rub it together with your fingers until combined and smelling tasty. Whisk in lemon juice and eggs.
Over medium-high heat, whisk constantly as the curd cooks. (Think of it as your arm workout for today). It will begin to thicken: cook it until you see whisk-tracks, and then remove from the heat and let cool briefly. This took me probably about 15 minutes.
Scrape the curd into a food processor or blender (Strain first, if you want to eliminate zest pieces—I don’t mind the zest, and I don’t have a strainer… so I skipped this), and blend until smooth. Once smooth, add in butter chunks, a few at a time, blending after each addition, until all of it is fully incorporated.
Let chill in the refrigerator before using. Keep it in an airtight container (I use jars for EVERYTHING). Eat with anything, or just off a spoon!
Meyer Lemon, Cardamom and Chia Muffins
I made 6, as per usual: double if you want a normal sized batch! This makes 6 huuuuge muffins. They’re not very sweet, which I like for snack muffins, but I’m sure the lemon curd would add just the right amount of sweetness :) Those who prefer sweeter muffins, make sure your bananas are super ripe, or else add a few tbsp of honey or brown sugar. *Update 3/14: These need lots of work—Kira and I aren’t super fans, we’ve decided. They need more flavor and more moistness… but that’s a project for another day! Adapted from Bright Eyed Baker, here!
- 1.5 c whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 tbsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp cardamom
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1/4 c meyer lemon juice
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 c yogurt (I used plain, lowfat)
- judicious sprinkle of chocolate chippies and frozen huckleberries (or frozen berry of choice, blueberry would be good too)
Preheat the oven to 375, and grease yo’ muffin tin.
In a largeish bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and soda, salt, cardamom, and chia seeds. In a smaller bowl, mash bananas, and then vigorously whisk in (your second arm workout for today: your biceps can thank me later) egg, vanilla, lemon juice, and yogurt until thoroughly combined. Add wet ingredients to dry, and fold in chocolate chippies and huckleberries.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a tester comes out clean. Mine went for 15 and came out perfectly.
Mmm. Enjoy your lemon-tastic day! My kitchen smells like sunshine now :) (And I have the added bonus of having sunshine in a jar in my fridge for later consumption, wheee!!)