This recipe was inspired by the season. But more importantly by the need to have something colourful to photograph for a creative shoot I was working on with Craig Scott Photography and Claire Clark recently.
Download the recipe HERE.
With the citrus season in full swing and my insta feed filled with lemon curd recipes and other delightful citrussy delights I looked around my kitchen the day before the shoot to see what sparked my creativity. (Nothing like last minute dot.com) The concept for the shoot was a dark and moody vibe, with the pop of colour coming from the food in each of the 3 shots. And when I saw the Naartjies in my fruit basket I just knew where they were going to take me.
I also had a ton of egg yolks in the freezer, left over from my Meringue Layer Cake Class, making a curd the obvious choice!! I wanted to take the flavour profile up a notch or two, so I decided to bring in some rooibos just for fun. I wanted the lovely woody notes from the tea to compliment the citrus.
Whilst on shoot Claire had the genius idea of charring some of the peel and adding it to the curd. It adds a lovely smokiness and real depth of flavour. When remaking the curd later on – I actually charred some of the the flesh and use the juice from it too. AMAZING!
Because my Naartjies were quite a lot sweeter than I would have liked, I ended up adding a little lime juice to balance the flavours. You could use lemon or even a tart grapefruit if you wanted to.
The shoot was an incredible success!! Here is the final image!!
After shooting the curd and whilst finalising the recipe I decided to try making a refined sugar free version using coconut sugar and honey. I’ve been reducing my refined sugar intake massively over the past 2 years, for health reasons, so when I get the chance to create a healthy alternative to a classic favourite, I jump at it! I really loved the idea of the honey flavour with this already quite earthy combo and the addition of the coconut sugar adds a lovely maltiness. It looks like caramel and tastes DELISH. I’ve given you the recipe adjustments for this option too.
125ml naartjie juice 45ml lime/ lemon or grapefruit juice(optional) 250g Sugar (150g coconut sugar and 100g honey for the refined sugar free version) 3 Egg yolks 1 Whole egg 100g Butter 5-10ml Rooibos loose leaf tea (or just cut open a teabag) 30ml zest of charred naartjie peel
Pop a saucer into the freezer whilst you prepare the ingredients.
Throw all the ingredients into a double boiler or if you’re a more confident cook just place it all into a heavy bottomed saucepan on a medium to low heat.
Stir continually until for about 10-15 minutes it should then be coating the back of a spoon thickly.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and then take the saucer out the freezer and place a teaspoon onto it and leave it for a minute to cool. If it cools and sets thickly then your curd is ready. If you’re not happy with the set then continue to cook the curd until you’re happy. Transfer to a clear glass jar with an airtight lid.
Use on toast, as a filling for cakes, swirl into yogurt or on ice cream with berries for a fruity dessert.
Eating it out the jar with a spoon is also a perfectly good option too 😉
When working with Curds, jams or custards or frankly any sauce that requires thickening or setting. I use a frozen saucer or side plate to check for setting point. Its a nifty trick I learnt from the Queen herself Nigella Lawson when she makes jam. Pop the saucer in the freezer when you start cooking and then when you think its ready remove the saucer and pop a small drop of curd onto the plate and check to see how it thickens. If its sets perfectly you know its ready if not you can keep cooking it. NO guess work needed!!!