Erica Lea on Apr 15th 2013
For some reason I am finding it particularly hard to write this post. Perhaps because I feel a disconnect with this recipe since I made it almost two months ago. That’s right - I made this delicious lemon curd for a bridal shower that I attended one day before I went into labor.
Ah yes. Now I remember how delicious it was spread on fresh scones; how surprisingly easy it was to prepare; and how pretty it looked in a Weck jelly jar.
If you have never made lemon curd before, let me urge you to give it a try. It’s hardly more bother than making a pudding. And it’s amazingly fresh and rich at the same time. If you’re a lemon fan, this is definitely something not to be missed.
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar (natural sugar can be used, but the curd won’t be as pretty)
- 1/2 cup Meyer lemon juice
- grated zest of 2 Meyer lemons
- 12 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
1) Have ready a heat proof bowl and a fine-mesh sieve. In another heat-proof bowl (or the top of a double boiler) combine the egg yolks and sugar and whisk vigorously for 1 minute. Add the lemon juice and zest and whisk for another minute.
2) Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water, making sure that the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 10-15 minutes. Add the butter one piece at a time, whisking until completely melted before adding another.
3) Remove from heat and strain the curd through the sieve into the heat-proof bowl, pressing the curd through the sieve. Place plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the curd and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days. Now you’re ready to serve your lemon curd on fresh scones (with butter and Devonshire cream), or however you wish!
Erica Lea on Nov 8th 2012
I must admit that November is not my favorite month. In Norther Minnesota, most of the colorful leaves are long gone and everything seems brown, grey and cold. I long for the lakes to freeze over so we can go skating and for snow so we can ski.
But this is the month to catch your breath before winter settles in. A time to dig out your extra warm coats, boots and sweaters in preparation for the freezing-cold days ahead.
It’s also a time to enjoy warm tea on grey days and hot, filling desserts on chilly evenings.
These roasted pears are the perfect little treat for an otherwise gloomy evening. They cook up without fuss and are fantastic with a scoop of good-quality vanilla ice cream. You really must serve them with ice cream.
- 2 ripe pears
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- good quality vanilla ice cream, for serving
1. Preheat oven to 450° F (230° C). Slice the pears in half lengthwise and cut out the centers.
2. In a small cast iron skilled place the butter, honey, vanilla and salt. Bring to a gentle boil and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
3. Add the pears to the pan, cut side down. Continue to simmer for 2 more minutes. Turn the peaches over and transfer to the oven. Bake for 12 minutes or until the pears are nice and soft and the sauce has caramelized.
4. Serve hot or warm with vanilla ice cream and the caramel sauce. Enjoy!
Erica Lea on Sep 17th 2012
Alright, ya’ll are probably just dying to hear my news right now, so I’ll cut to the chase.
We’re expecting! To see more photos and details, visit my personal blog.
Now about this peach cobbler.
Simply mix together some peaches, sugar, cinnamon and cornstarch, whip up a drop biscuit batter, and bake until golden. And you have dessert!
When Reuben saw me editing the photos for this post, he wistfully asked if there was any peach cobbler left, even though it had been gone for over a week. Guess that’s a hint to make it again.
* The original recipe was for a peach blueberry cobbler, which sounds lovely, but I didn’t have any on hand. I’m sure you could easily adapt this recipe for different fruits. Just make sure to adjust the sweetener according to the tartness of the fruit.
* If I would have thought of it, some coarse sugar sprinkled on top of the biscuits would have been lovely.
* I ended up cooking the cobblers much longer than the recipe recommended. Think of that time as a starting point.
- 4 to 5 ripe peaches, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, demerara, sucanat, rapadura, or sweetener of choice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 large egg
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (can substitute half whole wheat if desired)
- Pinch of table salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- Vanilla ice cream or cinnamon whipped cream (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place peaches in a large bowl. Whisk together 1/4 cup of the sugar, cinnamon, and cornstarch. Add to peaches; toss to combine. Set aside.
- Combine egg, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and cream in a bowl; whisk with a fork. Set aside.
- Sift together flour, salt, baking powder, and remaining tablespoon sugar. Make a well in center of dry ingredients, and pour egg mixture into well. Using hands, slowly draw dry ingredients into wet ingredients, and work dough until just mixed together.
- Divide fruit mixture among four 8-ounce ramekins. Gently pat dough into 4 disks just big enough to fit on top of ramekins. After placing, brush dough with remaining melted butter. Place ramekins on a baking sheet. Bake until juices bubble up and crust is golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes. Serve warm, with cream or ice cream if desired.
Erica Lea on May 25th 2012
Hey, ya’ll! Sorry I’ve been AWOL for the past couple of weeks. But I have a very good excuse: I was sick with various things for two weeks. Yeah, it was nasty. AND I’ve had a severe case of writer’s block.
But I’m gonna make it up to ya’ll in the form of cookies + a giveaway! Look for it next week.
For now, go check out my guest post on the Tasty Kitchen Blog. This Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream is marvy. And it’s super-easy.
What are your plans for the long weekend?
Have an awesome day!
Erica Lea on Apr 30th 2012
When I was a little girl, I always requested my favorite dessert for my birthday, or any other special occasion: Striped Delight (shortbread crust, a cream cheese + whipped cream layer and pistachio pudding on top). I still remember being horrified when, for my birthday (probably my fifth or sixth), there was no pistachio pudding in the house so lemon pudding was substituted. I was crushed.
A while back, I spied a recipe for homemade pistachio pudding on Joy the Baker’s blog. I knew it needed to happen in my kitchen someday, but I only worked up the gumption to make it a few days ago.
The results? A creamy pudding with wonderful depth of flavor. Does it replace the fakey instant pudding I grew up with? No, it tastes nothing like that. Is that a bad thing? No. I’ll probably eat more instant pistachio pudding before I die, but this recipe is a lovely, more natural alternative.
- Reuben and I agreed that, while very tasty, this pudding was a bit too sweet. Next time I’ll be cutting out a bit of the sugar.
- You can definitely use a natural sweetener (which is probably what I’ll do next time) if you wish. I used granulated because I wanted the pudding to be a pretty color for photos.
For the pistachio paste:
- 1/2 cup salted pistachio nuts
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar (or a natural sweetener)
- 2 tablespoons water
For the pudding:
- 2 cups whole milk
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar (or a natural sweetener)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup pistachio nuts, chopped
- whipped cream, for serving
To make the Pistachio Paste:
Place pistachios in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the nuts are in small bits. Add the sugar and water, and blend until relatively smooth.
To make the Pudding:
1) Spoon Pistachio Paste into a medium saucepan. Add the milk and whisk over medium heat. Heat milk and pistachio until steamy and hot.
2) While milk is heating, whisk together granulated sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch and pinch of salt. Mixture will be thick. Keep whisking until it’s smooth. Pour about 1/2 cup of the steaming pistachio milk into the sugar and egg mixture. Whisk together. Add another half cup of hot milk and whisk to incorporate. Return the milky egg mixture into the saucepan over medium heat.
3) Heat pudding mixture over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Whisk almost constantly. You might also want to use a heat-proof spatula to stir the mixture, ensuring that the sides and corners of the pan aren’t burning. Boil for about 1 minute, or until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla extract, until butter is melted. Pass cooked pudding through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium bowl. This will ensure that any cooked egg bits don’t make it into the finished pudding. Press the pudding through the strainer. Add a few of the pistachio nut bits that the strainer catches back to the pudding if you’d like.
4) Spoon into small ramekins, place plastic wrap over the individual puddings (so the plastic touches the top of the pudding), and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
5) Top with lightly sweetened whipped cream and chipped pistachios. Pudding will last, covered in the refrigerator, for up to 4 days.