The Blood Orange

Whilst obviously not local these are a very seasonal fruit, only around for a few short months come just at the right time when we need something uplifting to remind us spring is actually coming not matter what the weather is up to. As much as I try to eat locally grown food there are some treats I just cant resist – avocados, pineapples, pomegranates, kiwis, oranges – ok there are lots of treats but something is better than nothing right?

Blood oranges take me right back to a holiday in Barcelona with my mum a few years ago, particularly the amazing Boqueria fruit market which was round the corner from our hotel, blood oranges were at every stall, proudly sliced in half so you could see just how red they were inside. I was (not so elegantly) trying to consume as many as possible whilst wearing a white dress – the downside of travelling very light is not having enough outfits for your fruit choices!

Its become a bit of a joke between my mum and I that at this time of year blood oranges get put in ever possible food stuff in restaurants and cafes, whilst amusing to observe, I secretly like it. There are very few other fruits and vegetables that we can only get for a short time – Asparagus and wild garlic being in the same boat and its nice to have something to look forward to in the kitchen – just don’t give yourself blood orange/asparagus/wild garlic fatigue.

As I’ve been exploring making more preserves recently I thought I could try making something that would capture their fresh tangy taste, and after flicking through my new copy of Diana Henry’s “Salt Sugar Smoke” (an excellent book) I found a recipe for blood orange curd. I’ve never made a fruit curd before, though I have consumed many, I was surprised at how fast it was to make, I started when I got up and it was ready for brunch time.

 

Blood Orange Curd

Diana Henry

Makes 1 jar

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 70g sugar
  • 80ml blood orange juice – 1 large juicy oranges worth
  • 2 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 80g butter

 

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Add all the ingredients into a heat proof bowl, set over a simmering pan of water, but don’t let the bottom of the bowl touch the water, stir until the butter melts, then until it thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon – Diana said this could take up to 30 mins but mine only took 15. Make sure you keep stirring or the eggs could split.

Pour into sterilised jars, cover with a wax disk, allow to cool then refrigerate for up to two weeks – I doubt it will last that long though!

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