Curd, curd, curd, curd, curd.

Sounds gross. Tastes not-gross. One step away from a Hollandaise sauce. Great on cookies, breads, scones, muffins, biscuits, and some day, God willing, my sister’s homemade eclairs.

Once again I am blown away by the ease with which this recipe can be made. I really believe that television cooks and celebrity chefs — for the most part — try to psyche the general public into believing something is harder to make than it really is. The best example of this is a conversation I had with my brother-in-law when he asked me if I would be preparing a brine for a turkey I was making. Immediately, I said no, brining is too complicated, it’s too many ingredients, it’s too much work. It was, in fact, none of those things, as I gathered from looking at his face when he raised his eyebrows and said “Yeah? Ya don’t know how to boil water?”

Well, touche, sir.

Think curd is too hard? Hollandaise is for the gourmet chefs? Think again. If I can do it, anyone can.

Got lemon juice? Stir 2/3 of a cup of it with 2 eggs and 2 egg yolks. (Learn how to separate the white from the yolk here. It’s easier than it looks, and this guy makes it look pretty easy. And you know what? If there’s a teensy bit more white than yolk, the world won’t even end.)

Now, in a double boiler (read: a bowl over a pot of boiling water), melt 6 tablespoons of butter. Add a cup of sugar. Then whisk in the lemon and egg mixture. When I did this, I was using a wooden spoon because the recipe from Linda Zeidrich I used said that to stir for 5 minutes in the double boiler, and that when it was ready I would be able to know it was thick enough by running my finger down the spoon — it creates a path when it’s ready. But after about 30 seconds, I could see little pockets forming that looked dangerously close to scrambled eggs (big no-no). I switched to a whisk and whisked the mixture briskly for a couple of minutes, then went back to using the wooden spoon. Sure enough, by the 5-minute mark, the curd was perfect.

My crowning achievement that weekend was a batch of tiny cheesecakes topped with homemade lemon curd. It was epic.

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