Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Bergamot Curd

As promised, here is the curd recipe. This is perfect for scones, toast, just to eat, or for an unusual twist on the filling typically used in those little fruit tarts. If bergamots are not available to you, you could always use lemon, Seville orange, sweet types of orange (cut the sugar a bit though), lime, pomello, grapefruit or any other citrus. Enjoy!

9 ounces freshly squeezed bergamot juice
2 tablespoons finely grated zest
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 eggs
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
12 tablespoons butter, cut into 1 tablespoon bits

Whisk all but butter into a saucepan. Begin to heat over medium low heat and add all the butter. Whisking periodically, cook until the whisk marks stay in the curd. Pack into sterilised jars (or you can just put this in a jar and put it in the fridge, if you don't want to can it) and process 15 minutes. Makes about 3 cups.

11 comments:

  1. I'll have to use Seville oranges, but this looks so good I'm going to give it a try.

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  2. Thanks, Mary! I hope you like it! I like it best just straight out of the jar.

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  3. I saw the pic on tastespotting. Nice photo! I was curious about the recipe becuase a baker I used to work alongside with baked once a pound cake infused with bergamot. But I still don't know what bergamot is... I'll have to look it up.

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  4. Nurit,

    Thanks for visiting, and welcome!

    The bergamot orange is a sour orange (its botanical name is citrus bergamia, or citrus aurantium ssp. bergamia). It's origins are mysterius - some people believe it originated in Vietnam, other believe it's from Italy. It's a cross between the Seville orange and the pear (sweet) lemon.

    Bergamot is the musky, citrus scent you find in Earl Grey Tea. It's also prevalent in the cosmetics industry (this is where the majority of the world's crop goes). Most people consider the peel to be the only usable part of the orange, but I see no reason not to take advantage of the diversity in flavours between the pulp/juice and the rind. Both are exquisite in their flavour, but in different ways.

    The musk is primarily concentrated in the oil of the rind. The sour, lemony-orangy flavour is concentrated in the pulp. The rind I usually dry and use as a flavouring in curries and other savoury dishes, whereas the juice I use for pies, beverages, marinades, etc.

    If you live outside of California or other places that grow them, see if you can find a local produce purveyor who can obtain them. Usually I get them in 18 pound cases. Because the rind is SO high in essential oils, you want to process them within a couple days so they don't mould. I zest all the oranges (except what're being used for marmalade or curd) and oven dry the zest (storing it for later use), then juice all the oranges and freeze it in 2 tablespoon cubes.

    Here're some other recipes for bergamot, and if you don't mind sharing the pound cake recipe, I'd love to make it!

    Juice:

    http://seidhr.blogspot.com/2009/01/bergamot-marmalade.html

    Bergamade:
    1/2 cup each: bergamot juice, superfine sugar
    1 - 1 1/2 quarts cold water
    Mix well, serve over ice.

    Peel/Rind/Zest:

    http://seidhr.blogspot.com/2008/02/roasted-anise-and-leek.html
    http://seidhr.blogspot.com/2008/03/jewish-penicillin.html
    http://seidhr.blogspot.com/2008/10/pumpkin-puree-juice-seeds-and-butter.html
    http://seidhr.blogspot.com/2008/03/indian-inspired-broiled-cod.html

    Anywhere you'd use lemon or orange rind, you can use bergamot. I generally use the juice in place of lemon. Hope that helps!

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  5. I just made this out of my favorite fruit, Sarawak (a double batch). My kids and I are in LOVE. I've never made curd before, I thought it spoiled fast. I processed it for 15 minutes, I hope it lasts. Although, as much as we like it, it might not last anyway!
    I still have tons of fruit to use, however. My kitchen could be condemned. Lisa

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  6. Oh, I'm so glad you like the curd! I've recently opened a jar I had in the pantry for about a year, so I think it should last a while for you (if you don't eat it quickly, that is!). Though once opened, I'd eat it w/in a couple weeks.

    So what exactly is the Sarawak fruit? I'm totally unfamiliar w/ this one.

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  7. Well, here's a photo: http://www.brazoscitrusnursery.com/misccitrus.htm
    It's a pomelo. Very rare. Generally, you can't buy one of these, so unless you know some citrus fanatics, you won't taste one. It is my FAVORITE, but I only get them once per year, at Lindcove.
    This is Lindcove: http://groups.ucanr.org/lindcove/
    Anyway, it is fresh and clean and has a bit of lime and if you eat just enough your lips start to tingle. I eat it unabashedly.
    I now have a baby tree from my favorite fruit tree fanatic, but it probably won't bear for years.
    If you ever get the chance to get your hands on a Tahitian - that one *is* possible to find sometimes - it is a close cousin.
    Lisa

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  8. How wonderful to have such great access to uncommon fruits! I'll definitely keep an eye out for them!

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  9. My hubby got me some fresh bergamot from metz (a town in france, about an hour drive from our place. So i hv to look up some interesting recipe to try them out. 1st i made a earl grey tea with it, so good already! I guess a curd will go well with my homemade brioche!

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  10. Just finishing making the curd follow your recipe, lready taste so good! Just want to let u know! Then i saw your blog title, good food=love + happiness, so true!

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  11. Catlux,

    Welcome to my blog! I'm very envious of you that you live somewhere so close to bergamots! I'm glad you enjoyed the recipe. Bergamot curd is one of my favorite things to do with the oranges since it can be used in so many other recipes or just to top bread.

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