Monday, February 7, 2011

Tangerine Lemon Curd: The edible version of a messy bun

I’ve never been the kind of girl that makes a big fuss over her hair. Partially because I don’t have very much of it (and what I do have falls flat against my head no matter what course of action I apply), and partially because I just can’t be bothered. I’d rather spend more time eating my oatmeal in the morning than attempting to style that which can’t be styled.

So I typically follow the same beauty regimen every day – I flip my head upside down and blow dry my hair for the approximately 3 minutes it takes for it to dry, and then I comb it straight. Occasionally, I’ll get the urge to curl it, but I usually don’t give a second thought to the appearance of my lackluster golden locks beyond making sure I don’t have any noticeable flyaways.

On days that I’m feeling particularly lazy or short for time, I’ll skip the blow drying and brushing all together, and just throw my hair into a messy bun. I yank out a few strands around my face and bolt for the door, praying that I don’t run into anyone important (ie. a guy I want to date or Queen Nancy Silverton of the Mozzas).

Despite my complete lack of effort, for some reason this is the only hairstyle I’ve ever been complimented on. Nobody flinches when I spend a few extra minutes curling or shellacking my hair with some sort of goop that’s supposed to add volume, but they always seem to notice the heap of scattered messy hair that I’ve precariously affixed with a rubber band.

This tangerine lemon curd, made from Joy the Baker’s recipe, is the edible version of that messy bun. It’s not particularly hard to make and the name certainly doesn’t do it any favors, but the final product is soul-crushingly good.

I originally made the curd last Sunday to pair with Orangette’s Scottish Scones with candied ginger and lemon zest. While the scones are a completely respectable commodity on their own accord, their deliciousness was tragically overshadowed by the tangy, sweet tangerine curd I served on the side. In fact, the only reason I reached for a second scone was because I was in mixed company and needed an excuse to eat more curd. Had I been at home in my apartment, I surely would have licked it straight from the spoon. Or from my fingers.

Or, more likely, just directly from the bowl.

It’s not glamorous, but its voluptuous flavor and velvety texture are anything but pedestrian. I even built an entire dessert around the curd for a special dinner party I hosted this Saturday evening at my apartment. After we’d scraped up the final crumbs of the blackberry buttermilk cake, I encouraged my two guests to scrape the residual curd off their plates. And then I graciously offered one of them the serving spoon.

He licked it clean.

And then complimented me on my messy bun.

Tangerine Lemon Curd
From Joy the Baker
Makes about 3/4 cup

2 large egg yolks
1 large egg
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon tangerine zest
1/4 cup tangerine juice
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
Pinch of salt

Combine sugar and tangerine zest on a clean cutting board. With a bench knife or the back of a spoon, rub the zest into the sugar until the sugar is very fragrant and slightly orange in color.

In a medium saucepan over medium low heat, whisk together egg yolks, egg, tangerine sugar, juices, butter and salt. Whisk over the heat until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. This takes about 5 minutes. The mixture will begin to smell just like citrus curd. It’s delicious.

Remove from heat and pass through a fine mesh strainer into a medium bowl. Transfer to a small jar or airtight container and refrigerate until cool and thicker in texture. Curd will last, refrigerated, for about a week.


Gastronomer said...

Diana! Thank you again for spoiling me rotten this weekend. The cake and curd finisher were AMAZING!! SMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOCH!

To everyone: MAKE THIS CURD!

Ashley said...

Wow, I had originally wondered how tangerine would pair with spicy ginger, but with that glowing comment approval - I'm guessing perfectly.

Esi said...

Mmm...curd. Must make some soon!

Diana said...

Cathy - Thank you for letting me spoil you! And thank you for being the perfect excuse to make more curd!

Ashley - Oh it's amazing together! Like peanut butter and jelly, I tell ya!

Esi - Yes, you must. And then you must invite me over to eat it with you! ;)

Ashley said...

Mmmm... I just decided that this will pair perfectly with a favorite Gourmet polenta cake. Will let you know how it goes :)