There is nothing like the smell of cooking raspberries. Okay maybe there is, but they smell so amazing that if I could bottle that scent I would. One of the next best things is this luscious, ruby red Raspberry Curd. As the raspberries cook the smell fills your entire house. And in the end, you are left with this creamy, tart fruit spread that is so delicious I eat it by the spoon full.
Ingredients for Raspberry Curd
Curd is a simple, easy to make fruit spread that has 5 basic ingredients:
- Egg Yolks. The eggs thicken the curd
- Sugar. Because you always need a little bit of sweetness
- Unsalted Butter. Butter adds a creamy and rich texture to the curd
- Raspberries (Fruit). The more acidic the fruit the thicker the curd because acid causes the proteins to set up in the eggs.
- Lemon Juice.
The original fruit curd was lemon curd dating back to the 1800's in England. Fruit curd is different than jams because it uses the fruit juice instead of the whole fruit like jam. In addition, it relies on eggs and the natural fruit pectin to thicken into a creamy spread. Of all the fruit curds I have made to date lemon, lime and kumquats thicken the most, and the other versions like strawberry and rhubarb, require lemon juice to help thicken them.
How to Make the Raspberry Curd
One of the first tips I want to give for this recipe is the importance of cooking it in a non-reactive pan. What is a nonreactive pan? Certain metals will react with certain foods and change the taste and possibly the final appearance of the dish. Stainless steel and copper are examples of non-reactive pans. Aluminum and cast iron are examples of reactive pans, and these pans will react with the acid in the raspberries and raspberry curd.
Making the raspberry curd starts with 12 ounce of fresh raspberries. The raspberries are cooked with 1/2 of the sugar called for in the recipe until the berries are thoroughly broken down and the fruit juices have started to thicken.
Strain the berries through a fine-mesh strainer to remove the seeds and you should be left with 1 cup of raspberry puree. It is okay if you have as little as 3/4 cup. Allow the puree to cool to room temperature. You can also make the fruit puree two days in advance and refrigerate it until you're ready to make the curd.
Use the temperature to determine when the curd is done. The curd takes about 10 minutes to cook, but the temperature is a better gauge to determine doneness.
In a 3-quart saucepan combine the raspberry puree, the remaining sugar, the lemon juice, and the eggs. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly until the curd thickens and reaches a temperature of 185 degrees F.
Remove the curd from the heat and whisk in the room temperature butter 2 tablespoons at a time. Each additional should thoroughly combined before adding the next butter.
Do not attempt to rush this recipe by cooking over a higher temperature and do not leave the saucepan unattended. If you have to walk away remove the pan from the heat.
Strain the curd through a medium-coarse strainer into a bowl to catch any of the egg solids. Cover the curd with plastic wrap by pressing the plastic into the surface of the curd. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours to thoroughly chill. The curd will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for up a year, which means if you have a family get together coming up, this raspberry curd is the perfect treat to share for breakfast, lunch or dessert.
Other Fruit Curd Recipes
I love making fruit curds. While the name doesn't sound all that good, it is one of the tastiest treats to make and an easy way to add additional flavor to your desserts. Here are some of my other favorite curds:
- Lemon Curd
- Strawberry Curd
- Cranberry Curd (bookmark this one for Thanksgiving and Christmas)
- Seville Orange Curd
- 16 ounces (454 grams) fresh raspberries
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) white sugar
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 (100 grams) whole eggs
- 4 (80 grams) egg yolks
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- Place the raspberries, 1/4 cup of sugar and 2 tablespoons of water in a 3-quart non-reactive saucepan. Cook the raspberries over medium heat until they start to break down. Use a potato masker to completely break down the berries Strain the berries through a fine-mesh strainer to remove the seeds. You should have 1 cup of puree. Allow the raspberries to cool to room temperature. Add the lemon juice and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar and taste the mixture. If it is still a little tart add additional sugar 1 tablespoon at a time until desired sweetness is reached.
- Place the raspberry puree back in the 3-quart saucepan. Rinse and dry the bowl and place it next to the stove with a medium-coarse strainer Add the whole eggs and egg yolks to the raspberry-lemon mixture and whisk to combine.
- Cook the curd over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with silicone spatula or metal whisk, until the mixture is thickened and registers 180 degrees in multiple spots, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Off heat, stir in butter until incorporated. Strain curd through the medium-coarse strainer into the bowl. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto surface of curd and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. (Curd can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.)