Love lemon curd but want a winter take on it? Make cranberry curd!
I came in at the last minute last year with these cranberry pistachio bars so they missed out on too many potential occasions to make them so this year I wanted to give you the straight up curd recipe to do with what you like.
This curd recipe takes inspiration from David Tannis’ cranberry curd tart. Where I depart from his recipe: I use whole eggs (so that there’s no ‘yolk’ taste in my curd and I don’t have leftover egg bits), I cook the sugar with the berries, I have you blend the berries so you get the most cranberry flavor and color, and like all my curds, I stir the butter in after the curd has cooked. This gives you a more smooth texture.
Cranberries: fresh cranberries sold in the produce section of the grocery store. Sometimes you can find them frozen but this time of year (fall/winter) it’s best to use the fresh ones.
Oranges: you’ll need the zest and the juice from the oranges. If your oranges are small you’ll need 2-3, if they’re really big just one might do.
Eggs: Whole large eggs. This curd recipe is unique in that it does not separate the eggs (and there’s no leftover egg whites or egg yolks!)
Sugar: Fine granulated sugar. If you want an even more tart flavor you can reduce the sugar by a few tablespoons.
Butter: Unsalted butter. Salted is fine here too but if you are the type to add a pinch of salt to things (like I do!) then it’s best to use unsalted.
Start by zesting and juicing the oranges: do this straight into the saucepan you’ll be using to cook. Zest first then juice and measure out how much juice you’ll need.
Cook the cranberries with the orange juice, zest and the sugar: pour all these ingredients into the pan and set it over medium heat. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the berries have mostly burst and all are at least soft.
Puree the berries: if you have an immersion blender, you can blend the berries right in the pan. If not, transfer the mix to a blender or food processor and process until all the berries are broken down.
Sieve the puree: pour the cranberries through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl, pressing the skin and berries to extract as much juice as possible. Discard the solids.
As long as the pot is no longer very hot, you can crack the eggs into the pot and whisk them in there. Temper in the eggs: the cranberry puree is usually still quite hot so we want to be careful not to cook the eggs before they are mixed in. Slowly pour the sieved berry mixture into the eggs, stirring as you do.
Cook the curd: over medium low heat, stirring often. The curd will thicken on the bottom first, make sure you stir it to get it to cook evenly. Stop once it coats the back of a spoon, or if you have a thermometer, the temperature reaches 165 F.
Sieve the curd over the butter: set the butter in a heatproof bowl and a fine mesh sieve over it. Pour the curd through it and press. Scrape the bottom of the sieve to ensure you’ve captured all of the curd. Doing this helps get rid of any egg white bits.
Stir and chill: stir the curd with the butter until the butter is fully melted. Once the curd is at room temperature you can transfer it to the fridge for longer storage. Make sure to seal it!
Can I use dried cranberries or cranberry juice to make the curd?
Unfortunately no. Dried cranberries have no juice in them. Cranberry juice doesn’t yeild the same bright flavor. IT has to be fresh cranberries for this one.
Can I pour this into a tart shell and bake it for a cranberry curd tart?
Yes you can and it doesn’t need any additional thickeners. bake it in a pre-baked crust for 15-20 minutes until it’s set at the edges.
Spread it over a pavlova.
Spoon it over ice cream or spread it over toast.
Use it between cake layers or over cheesecakes.
You can also serve it with french toast or pancakes.
The cranberry curd can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Keep it in an airtight container. If you want to have it for longer storage, freeze it. It’ll keep frozen for 2 months.
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