So i’m starting to think about Valentines day.
I obviously need to buy C a present, I have an Idea for him (Cheese, probably) and C will hopefully buy me chocolates (Hint hint!) but I like to distribute a little extra love to close friends and family too, especially if there’s anyone who might not get a present on the day. Here is my solution for homemade, passion filled gifts, literally.
Ok, passion fruit is a rather obvious choice for a Valentines but I really do love these pretty little fruits especially as a curd- Sweet sharp and creamy it’s delicious slathered on toast or on scones and makes an amazing filling sandwiched between shortbread biscuits or dolloped over meringues. I was delighted to pick up some passion fruits whilst out shopping last week, valentines day is imminent and these little beauties turned into a preserve will make a great gift.
To Make Passion fruit curd you will need:
- 2 x 250-300ml capacity jam jars and lids
- silicone paper circles, cut to the size of the mouth of the jam jars
- 6 passion fruit
- the juice of 1 lime
- 90g caster sugar
- 2 whole eggs and 2 egg yolks
- 75g unsalted butter
- I cook curd over a bain-marie so use a large heatproof glass mixing bowl that sits snugly into the mouth of a saucepan filled with about an inch of water.
- An oven pre-heated to 100°C
To begin: Cut the passion fruits in half and scoop out the flesh (you can strain off the seeds but I love the crunch and texture they bring to the finished curd, somehow passionfruit doesn’t taste like passionfruit without the seeds) Transfer the passionfruit flesh into the heatproof bowl along with the lime zest, sugar, whole eggs and egg yolks and place the bowl onto the saucepan. Transfer to the hob and heat gently, whisking all the ingredients together.
cooking: Curd can be cooked in a saucepan over direct heat but this requires continuous stirring and full attention as overheating can lead to the curd splitting. As I get easily distracted I find this bain-marie method a little safer as the curd can be left to its own devices with occasional whisking. The curd thickens as it cooks and is ready when it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. This takes around 20 to 25 minutes. Once thickened turn off the heat and whisk in the butter so you have a silky smooth mixture.
To sterilise the jars for the curd thoroughly wash them and their lids in hot soapy water. Rinse clean and place the jars upside down onto a grill tray. Transfer the tray into a pre-heated oven for 5-10 minutes until the jars are dry.
To finish: Once the curd is ready decant the curd into a measuring jug and pour straight into the prepared jars while they are still hot. Place a silicone paper circle onto the top of the curd to create a seal and then screw the lid tightly onto the jar.
Adding the curd to the jar whilst both are still hot creates an airtight vacuum, sealing the curd as it cools preventing any bacterial contamination that could lead to mould. Leave the jars to cool completely- overnight if possible.
Passion fruit curd stored in the fridge will last about a month, once open eat within a few days.
Here are some brilliant ways to use passion fruit curd:
- Passion fruit meringues
- Passion fruit biscuits
- Coconut passion fruit cupcakes
- Passion fruit meringue pie