Curd You Use Me?

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Could you use some rhubarb curd in your life?

Curd You Use Me? A rhubarb curd recipe inspired by the song Could You Use Me?

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First performed by Ginger Rogers in the show that made her a star, Could You Use Me? is a stereotypically charming Gershwin musical comedy duet, originally from  Girl Crazy but re-used in Caprese For You – sorry – Crazy For You as a prelude to Shallot We Dance (you can read a little more about these shows in our Butternut For Me post). Similarly, this post is a prelude to another as I made this rhubarb curd as one of the toppings in a rhubarb and raspberry pavlova – but more on that in this post!

Oh, I’m the chappie
To make you happy;
I’ll tie your shoes-ies
And chase your blues-ies;
Oh, lady would you –
Oh, tell me, could you use me?

Curds made from fruit juices make a great filling for cakes and desserts with lemon being the most well-know flavour. I wanted to make a different flavour and decided on rhubarb (not really known for its juice). Instead of fresh fruit, I used a store-bought rhubarb and raspberry juice drink (which was 69% apple juice, 12% raspberry juice and 4% rhubarb juice, fact fans – that might not seem like a lot of rhubarb, but the distinctive flavour does come through). I’ve used this juice previously in an adaption on my cranberry posset recipe and, as you will see, this curd recipe is a similar concept (by the way, I heartily recommend rhubarb possets!). The advantage of using fruit juice is that you don’t have to add any additional sugar – although this is not a sugar free recipe as the fruits are full of naturally-occurring sugar… but it’s easier to feel less guilty about those. You can, of course, use any fruit juice you choose but use fresh juice, not concentrate.

Boil a litre of juice, skimming off any froth, until you have about 250mls left (if you go too far, just add a little water). Let this cool down until it’s at least tepid, if not cold. Mix in the juice of half a lemon and a pinch of salt. Separate three eggs and whisk together the yolks plus another three whole eggs (those left over egg-whites can be frozen or used elsewhere… a pavlova maybe?) As I discovered in my Beauty School Dropscone experiments, egg yolks are a bit of a killer for delicate pink colours and so I added a drop of red food colouring, purely for aesthetic reasons!

Whisk in the syrupy fruit juice and transfer to a saucepan. Slowly heat this up stirring continuously so that nothing sticks to the base (a rubber spatula is good for this). After 7-10 minutes, the mixture will suddenly thicken. When it has reached a good custard thickness, remove from the heat and pour the mixture into a bowl or jug, allowing to cool for 5 minutes. Beat in some cubed softened butter – bit by bit until it has all been incorporated. Pour this into sterilised jars (or some other receptacle if you’re going to be using it soon after).

Curd You Use Me? A rhubarb curd recipe inspired by the song Could You Use Me?

Once the curd has cooled, use it as you wish. Store in the fridge (this doesn’t have any preservatives like store-bought curds) and use within a couple of weeks. This recipe will make enough to fill a couple of standard jam jars.

Curd You Use Me
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Ingredients

  • 1L fresh fruit juice
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 3 extra egg yolks
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • pinch of salt
  • 100g softened butter, cubed
  • 1 drop red food colouring (optional)

Instructions

  1. Boil a litre of juice, skimming off any froth, until you have about 250mls left. Let this cool down until it’s at least tepid, if not cold. Mix in the juice of half a lemon and a pinch of salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the three yolks and the three whole eggs.
  3. Whisk in the syrupy fruit juice and transfer to a sauce pan. Slowly heat this up stirring continuously so that nothing sticks to the base.
  4. After 7-10 minutes, the mixture will suddenly thicken. When it has reached a good custard thickness, remove from the heat and pour the mixture into a bowl or jug, allowing to cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Beat in the cubed softened butter bit by bit until it has all incorporated.
  6. Pour it into sterilised jars and store in the fridge for up to two weeks.

Notes

This recipe will make enough to fill a couple of standard jam jars.

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