Monthly Archives: March 2015

Curd-based Mousse

Once I learned to make a good curd, and was thinking about what I could do for the green of St Patrick’s day, I decided to make a lime version of the curd, and then convert it into a mousse. The curd recipe says that all you need to do is substitute lime for lemon.

lime mousse 002

Lime curd is not really green- it is still a yellow color, so I added a few drops of food color to the curd to get a definite green color for my lime curd.

This recipe will also work with the lemon curd if you want. And it is also easy to expand the recipe from 6 servings to more. I increased the amounts of the ingredients by 50% and could have easily gotten 10 servings- I only needed 8 servings so the rest went into the refrigerator for me. The increase of 50% means the 10 ounces of curd becomes 15 ounces. And when I finished making the curd, I had about 20 ounces so the recipe could be doubled with a single recipe of curd.

Curd-based Mousse

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces curd of your choice
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1 cup fresh berries as garnish

Directions

  1. Whip the cream to the soft peak stage
  2. In a second bowl, mix the curd and cream cheese until smooth
  3. Stir the curd mixture into the whipped cream until well blended
  4. Divide into 6 glasses
  5. Divide the fresh berries among the 6 glasses
  6. Refrigerate until serving

Since I was making this as a St. Patrick’s day dessert, I had also made Two-Tone Brownies and added green food color to what is normally the white cream cheese frosting layer. That is why the brownies also appear in the photo.

I hope this gives you some ideas for dessert, and how to tie the desserts to the holiday if necessary by using a little food coloring.

Green Eggs and Ham (Deviled Eggs)

Dr. Seuss was the go-to author when the daughters were young, and I am always thinking about rhymes that appeared in his books. So when I was starting to work on St. Patrick’s day, I kept getting into my head “Green Eggs and Ham” I decided I had to do something about it. This is easy, and it can carry over to when you are not doing a St Patrick’s day event. The eggs are basically a bland deviled egg, and the green is food color. I used lunch meat ham under the eggs, cut to a nice size for little fingers to pick up.

Green Eggs 004

Deviled Eggs

Ingredients

  • Eggs- 6-8 is a nice number, but make what you want
  • Mayonaise- use 1 Tablespoon for every 2 eggs
  • Mustard- use 1 teaspoon for every 2 eggs
  • White Wine Vinegar – use 1/4 teaspoon for every 2 eggs

Because this recipe is particulary bland, you can add other ingredients to suit the taste, such as hot sauce, crumbled bacon, chopped jalapenos, etc.

Directions

  1. Place the eggs in a single layer in the bottom of a sauce pan; fill the pan with cold water to a depth of 1 inch over the top of the eggs. Place the pan on the stove and bring to a boil.
  2. When the water boils, remove the pan from the heat and cover the pan with a lid. Let the pan sit undisturbed for 13 minutes.
  3. Cool the eggs as quickly as possible. Dump the hot water and replace it with cold water. Place a large number of ice cubes in the pan.
  4. As soon as the eggs are cool enough to handle, crack the shells to allow the cold water to get into the shells.
  5. Let the eggs sit in the cool water for at least 15 minutes; longer is better, even refrigerated over night.
  6. Peel the eggs. Cut them lengthwise and remove the yolk to a separate bowl. If you are coloring the egg whites, place them in a bowl of food color and water for a couple minutes, then place them on paper toweling to drain.
  7. Smash the yolks, and add all the other ingredients to the bowl. Mix thoroughly. Push the resulting mixture through a sieve to remove lumps and make it smooth.
  8. Place the yolk mixture in a piping bag, or a plastic storage bag, and cut the corner off to pipe the yolk mixture into the egg whites. Sprinkle carefully with paprika for color.
  9. Serve immediately, or chill until serving time


NOTE: November 5, 2015 After making the Spider Eggs, I decided to test a couple differences in making the Deviled Eggs. First, I tried letting the cooled eggs rest for different lengths of time- 15 minutes and 2 hours and overnite in the refrigerator. I did not leave them in water in the refrigerator. Waiting the 2 hours definitely made peeling easier. The refrigerated eggs had lost much of the air pocket at the big end, and were harder to get started; that is why I mention the lack of water in the refrigerator. They did come out perfectly once I got peeling started.

The second test was to make the filling in the food processor rather than in a mixing bowl. I must say it worked very well; I did NOT feel I needed to sieve the mixture to eliminate the lumpiness I have previously had. I just put everything in the food processor and pulsed it a few times.

Lemon Curd

If you have breakfast breads, like toast or English Muffins, then you should learn to make Lemon Curd as a topping for the bread. It works just like jams and jellies, but I discover that I skip the butter when I use lemon curd.

Lemon Curd 002

And lemon curd is not just a topping for your breakfast breads; it can also be used on sweet breads, like tea breads or pudding breads- anywhere you would like a strong lemony flavor. Lemon curd is also a base for other recipes that want a strong lemony flavor.

This recipe is easy, and I feel fail-safe. I have made it several times, and it comes out perfect with a nice smooth curd.

Lemon Curd

Ingredients

  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 egg yolks in addition
  • 2/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest

Directions

  • Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Add the eggs and egg yolks one at a time, beating each into the mixture. Mix in the lemon juice. The mixture will look lumpy but will smooth out in the next step as it is cooked.
  • In a heavy bottom sauce pan, cook the mixture over low heat until it smooths out. The lumpy appearance disappears as the butter in the mixture melts. Increase the heat to medium and continue to cook the mixture, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens. The thickened mixture should leave a path on the back of a spoon, and will read 170 degrees F on a thermometer. Don’t let the mixture go beyond 170 degrees, or boil.
  • Remove the mixture from the heat, and stir in the lemon zest. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, and press plastic wrap on the surface of the lemon curd to keep a skin from forming. Chill the curd in the refrigerator; it will thicken as it cools.

The curd will keep in the refrigerator for a couple weeks, and can be frozen for a couple months.

For a lime curd, substitute lime juice and zest for the lemon juice and zest.

I found that two large lemons gave me the 2/3 cup of lemon juice. I have also made this recipe with just a single lemon for the zest, and the rest of the juice from the plastic bottle in the refrigerator.

The recipe makes about 20 ounces of curd.