Orange Curd

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I had a ton of egg yolks left over from a previous project.

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And four oranges that were starting to dry out and look a little forlorn.

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And as we know, lemon curd may be my very favourite thing (it’s hard to tell, though, as I have a lot of favourite things).  So why not experiment with some orange curd?  I figure if I balance the sweetness of orange as opposed to lemon it should work out okay.

So before you start, cut up about 3/4 cup butter into tablespoon-sized pieces and pop that back in the fridge.  If you like your curd a little salty, use salted butter, but if you like it super sweet, use unsalted butter.  But either way, make sure it’s cold.

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In a medium saucepan, whisk together 8-10 egg yolks, 1/4-1/2 cup sugar (depending on how sweet your oranges are), 4 tablespoons lemon juice, the juice of 4 oranges, and the zest of 2 oranges.

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Heat on medium, stirring constantly, until the mixture starts to thicken.  If you heat it too high, too fast, you will curdle it and that’s no good.  We want the yolks to cook slowly, for about 10 minutes. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the pot often.

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It will begin to coat the back of a wooden spoon.  When it’s nice and thick, raise the heat a bit and bring it to a simmer (not a boil), stirring again, for about 2 minutes.

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Remove the pot from the heat and take your butter from the fridge.  Working one piece at a time, add butter chunks to the mixture and stir until they are fully melted.  This has the dual effect of cooling the hot curd and also adding some fat to the mixture for easy setting.

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When all the butter is finally added and melted, your curd will be smooth and thick.

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Pour it into a bowl or clean jar and place some plastic wrap on the surface of the hot curd so that a skin doesn’t form.

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Pop it in the fridge to cool completely.  This makes about 2 1/2 cups of curd.

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