Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Clementine Curd



Jamie, Jamie, Jamie.  Your cheeky-chappie persona grates more than my easy-peel clementines did.  But you seduced me with your free Christmas recipe booklet from my mother's Daily Fail at the weekend.  Your Get Ahead Gravy came highly recommended by one of the few friends whose taste and culinary skills I implicitly trusted.  So despite my initial reticence, I was swayed by the glorious orangeyness of the clementine curd.
The ingredients

It started so well.  Aside from the battle to zest easy-peel clementines.  Now I understand why there are difficult-to-peel ones.  You use them for making curd.  Clementines juiced.  One lemon, two limes juiced and zested.  Lots of sugar added.  Butter cubed.  Eggs, cracked and lightly whisked.

Heated gently until it coated the back of my spoon.   It looked a little dodgy at the start.  I won't say what I think it looked, like - take a look and decide for yourself from the pic. In the end, no scrambled citrus-flavoured eggs for me.  But It's-Not-Setting.  I keep nipping downstairs to take a look.  But it seems to be getting runnier rather than thicker.

Early cooking...it's not scrambled, honest!
I made Nigel Slater's lemon curd a few weeks ago and this worked perfectly.  The difference here being that he cooked it in a bain marie rather than straight into the pan.  Taste-wise, Jamie's is very sweet.  Too sweet for me in fact.  But it would work well on toast or with cream in pancakes.

But Sir Nigel's set.  Beautifully.  And despite him saying it only keeps for a couple of weeks (I missed that bit until last night when I re-read the whole article I posted a link to previously) mine has been in the fridge for six weeks and when I cracked it open, instead of finding a slimy mess, it was still the same gorgeous, canary-yellow, unctuous, wobbly curd that I remembered from when I made it.

Have just now filled one large jar with my clementine curd and have left the rest to cool in the pan.  Not looking hopeful, however just stirred a spoonful into a pot of greek yogurt and it tastes pretty darn good.

No longer lumpy, but it won't thicken...
Looking at the two recipes, they are pretty equivalent (Jamie's is roughly double that of Nigel's).  The only difference being that they use the same amount of butter.  Would double have made Jamie's thicken more?  This is where I find myself again desperate for someone (please Heston!) to publish a book on the science of normal cookery that isn't in French.  Why isn't there one on the market?  Or if there is, someone please tell me where I can get a copy.  Surely we all could do with some help along the lines of 'if you use more eggs in recipe X then Y will happen'.

Jamie's Clementine Curd recipe is here.  But I would still recommend Nigel's recipe for Lemon Curd every time.

Picture of the finished jar as me and the camera are two flights of stairs away from the jar.  #toolazy #thisiswhyI'mfat

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