Grapefruit Curd

I’ve been doing quite a bit of baking lately (with pictures to come!).  After baking many items that required copious amounts of egg whites, I began to acquire quite the store of egg yolks.

Whats a girl to do with so many yolks?  As it turns out, after some googling, I found out the perfect thing to do is make curd!

Curd is an amazing food.  It has a soft jelly-like consistency and manages to be both sweet and sour at the same time.  You can even spread it on scones!  What a wonderful invention.  Now, I’ve spent years coveting the traditional lemon curds you find in grocery stores, often covered in a thin layer of dust in the British isle, or something obscure like that.  I am not sure why some people consider curd only acceptable for elderly woman at tea time.  But you can put it on ice cream, with oatmeal, in yogurt, and in macarons!  (soon to be made)  Curd is delicate and delightful and if you have not tried it, you certainly need to.

As it turns out, curd is actually incredibly easy to make.  I would highly recommend giving it a try if you have some aging fruit and older eggs. I had the perfect companion to the abandoned yolks, an aging grapefruit.  So in quite a complementary way, my soon-to-be discarded scraps became delicious grapefruit curd.  I love it when cooking turns out that way.

From Good Life Eats

1/2 cup grapefruit juice
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon grapefruit zest
1 – 1 1/2 cups sugar
8 egg yolks
10 tablespoons butter, sliced into tablespoons

In a saucepan, combine first 4 ingredients.  Heat over medium heat until the sugar mixture reaches a simmer.  Make sure all the sugar is dissolved, then turn heat down to low.

Whisk egg yolks until smooth.  Pour approximately half of the warm dissolved sugar mixture into the bowl with whisked egg yolks. Vigorously whisk together until combined.  Then, pour the combined egg and sugar mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining sugar and juice mix.

Continue to cook over low heat while whisking until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, which should take about 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time.

Cool to room temperature then store refrigerated in an airtight container for about a week.

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The return and French words

As many of you know, I have been MIA from blogging for a little over a month for lots of exciting reasons.  First, we moved.  The boyfriend and I had been living on the edge of the city in a quaint little suburb.  While this was a lovely area, new jobs and no more classes (hooray!) persuaded us to move into the city.  This way, we are both closer to work and friends.  We now have a nice little apartment in the city with a view worth a million bucks.  Here’s the proof.

You will notice the train tracks in front.  Yes, we live next to the train.  Luckily, it is a suburban commuter train so it provides more of a soft rustle than a loud, disturbing noise.  My favorite part about the new apartment is my huge kitchen.  It’s lovely, with lots of counter space and tons of cupboards.  I can’t wait to start filling them up!

Second, (as I alluded to above) I am officially and finally done with school forever!  Well, classes that is. When you are a professional, the work is never done, so I do not have my degree yet.  I now have the daunting task of finishing my dissertation and internship before they hand me my diploma.  I foresee lots of late night cooking to keep myself sane over the next year.

Lastly, the boyfriend has now become the fiance!

I love the ring and he proposed in a very sweet and personal way.  We are very excited.  However, the thought of planning a wedding in the next year while finishing my dissertation and internship makes me want to hyperventilate, so the actual event will be more than a year away.  In the mean time, the fiance (that word is still strange to me) and I are just enjoying ourselves in our new apartment.

In honor of strange, French words like fiance, I decided to post a French dessert called clafoutis.  Don’t let the French intimidate you; this is a very simple recipe.  I have made it a few times and it almost always turns out great.

Essentially, clafoutis (pronounced klah-foo-TEE) is a cross between a pancake and a custard.  Its light, slightly sweet, and should have the consistency of flan.  Clafoutis is one of those strange concotions that is difficult to explain, but has a strange familiarity when eaten.  It is often baked in a pie pan and has fresh fruit in it.  It is much easier to just show you what it looks like.

I used nectarines for this clafoutis.  Traditionally, the dessert has cherries or blackberries, but almost any ripe fruit works well.  The edges of this clafoutis really puffed up, a bit like a Dutch Baby.  This often happens with clafoutis because of the amount of egg in it.  I think it has a classy, rustic look.  It is a very simple dessert that you can make quickly for unexpected company with some basic ingredients you have around the kitchen.  In fact, I made this clafoutis for some friends of ours who happened to be in town and were stopping by after dinner.   It only takes about 30 minutes to prep and make, and is usually a crowd pleaser.

Clafoutis (adapted from Playing House)

1 Tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup white, granulated sugar

3 extra-large eggs, at room temperature

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 1/4 cups milk (this works best with whole milk, or cream)

1 dash of salt

1 Tbs pure vanilla extract

1 large nectarine, sliced 1cm thick

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Butter a pie pan liberally.  If you like, sprinkle one Tablespoon of white sugar in the pan for a nice crust.

Beat eggs and sugar together in a large bowl.  Beat together well.  It is helpful to do this with a blender or stand mixer.  Slowly add in flour, milk, salt and vanilla.  Mix until smooth.

Place netarine in the bottom of the greased pie pan.  Pour mixture over the fruit.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Serve warm.  If you like, sprinkle with powdered sugar or ice cream.