When life hands you lemons, you make lemonade, right? Well, what happens when a friend hands you a bag full of limes, and not just any limes, but Persian Limes? Thoughts of Lime Curd Tartlets, Lime Cream Cake and other delights start dancing through your head. And of course a lovely Gin and Tonic and maybe a Margarita or two. And best of all, these were grown and harvested by a friend out of her own garden. I’ve also figured out I’m not in danger of developing either scurvy or malaria in the near future, since I’ve been drinking Tonic Water with Lime from these beauties. Which reminds me, I’m out of Tonic Water and almost out of Gin. Sorry, got side tracked there.
I ended up making Lime Curd Tartlets for Boat Club, as well as keeping some Lime Curd for me, some Lime Syrup (for Margarita’s) and some candied Lime Slices. Plus of course I froze some lime zest, and have also juiced and frozen some of the lime juice. I was thinking of marmalade, but the juice from these limes are industrial strength. I don’t think I’ve ever had such powerful limes. Really good, but WOW!!!!!!
Aren’t they pretty just sitting there?
I was told that they were kind of a pink when you cut into them, but had no idea how pretty they would look.
|Lemon and Lime in the back, Persian Lime in front.|
The Persian Lime is the one in front, but since I had some regular limes and lemons in the house, I thought I would show you the contrast between them.
Then I just had fun, arranging the different citrus fruits and taking pictures. Life isn’t just about cooking after all.
After the photo session, I got down to some serious stuff though. I wanted to make some Lime Curd Tartlets, and needed pastry shells to put the Lime Curd into. I did use commercial Pie Crust for these, mainly because the dough is a lot sturdier than my own homemade crust, and since I was making these as a finger food, I wanted a good base.
I lay out my tart shells on a round of dough, I find I can get ten tart shells out of one round of crust.
Press the molds lightly into the dough, and then remove the shells and cut the shapes out.
I them press them into the molds, and prick with a fork, very lightly, and bake them off for about 15 minutes in a 375 degree oven, or until the shells are a light golden brown.
Then it was time to make the curd. I zested the limes first, then cut them in half and juiced them.
I heated the juice, sugar and zest up to boiling before tempering the egg yolks with some of the hot juice. I then added the egg yolks to the juice and continued to cook the mixture for another ten minutes. It will thicken a little. To a pudding consistency.
Remove from heat and whisk in 6 tablespoons of butter, one tablespoon at a time. Make sure it’s all incorporated before adding the next cube of butter.
After it had cooked, I poured it into a container and placed some plastic wrap on top of the custard to keep it from forming a skin (and forgot to take a picture, grrrrr….) placed the bowl in the fridge to cool down. And later on, piped the curd mixture into the shells, topped them with some whipped cream and served them.
In some of the tart shells I piped some raspberry jelly, and some curd, before topping them with the whipped cream.
And as I said before, I saved some of the curd for myself for my toast. However, I did have to make some modifications to the original curd recipe. As I said before, the juice I got from them was industrial strength and was very strong, so after making the curd, I had to cut the flavour down, so I added a can of Sweetened Condensed milk and it mellowed it out a lot.
Here’s the recipe
1 1/2 cups sugar (depending on how strong the juice is, you can cut it down if you wish)
1 cup Lime Juice
1 Tablespoon Lime Zest
4 egg yolks lightly beaten
6 Tablespoons Butter, cut into cubes.
1 14 oz. can Sweetened Condensed Milk
Heat the sugar and lime juice to boiling. Lightly beat the egg yolks, and set aside. When the juice mixture comes to a boil,take off the heat and remove a half cup of juice. Pour the half cup or so of the hot juice into the egg yolks, just dribbling it in and whisking the egg yolks the entire time. You want to temper the egg yolks so they don’t cook when you add them to the hot juice. Then whisk the egg yolks into the juice and return to the heat. Cook for an additional 10 to 12 minutes, whisking the entire time. Then take off the heat and whisk in the butter, one tablespoon or cube at a time. This adds some silky richness. The juice will thicken and become a pudding like consistency. Taste at this point. Add the can of Sweetened Condensed Milk and whisk in. It will thicken nicely at this point. Cover with some plastic wrap pressed down on the curd, this prevents a skin from forming as it cools. Place in fridge for at least two hours before using. Use as a filling for tarts, or a cake or just on toast.
Of course if you’re me, you’ve got a piece of bread in the toaster at this point so you can taste test the curd on a piece of toast. I’ve taste tested a few pieces so far. You have to excuse me, it’s time to test some more.