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Dec 15, 2005 01:01 PM

lemon curd, how long will it last, anyway to stretch it?

  • w

I'm making home made meyer lemon curd as gifts for friends. How long will it last in the fridge? In the past when I made it for my own uses, the left over seem to fair pretty well for a few days. Can I say good for a week?

How come store bought curd lasts much longer even though the ingredients didn't say anything else besides egg, sugar and lemon juice?

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  1. Would you kindly share your recipe? Have you ever tried substituting lime?

    3 Replies
    1. re: bellelettres

      Epicurious has a recipe for lime curd if you are interested... It's part of a recipe for making cranberry lime tart

      Additionally, I did a google search on "Lime Curd" and found a recipe for lemon\lime curd that states it keeps in the fridge for up to two months. I don't know how to add a second link down below so I'm pasting into the body here

      Unfortunately though, I can't seem to find a recipe to actually 'can' lemon or lime curd. Probably for precisely the reason the other poster mentioned.

      Hope this helps.


      1. re: bellelettres

        actually, I was just going to Epicurious and look up a regular lemon curd recipe and subtitute the lemons. I don't have a secret meyer lemon recipe :)

        1. re: Wendy Lai

          This is the meyer curd recipe I use. It's based off one from John Ash's "From The Earth To The Table." I reduced the sugar from the original recipe to account for meyer's lower acid and higher sweetness.

          1 cup fresh meyer lemon juice
          3/4 cups sugar (use 1 1/4 cups if using regular lemons)
          1 tsp cornstarch
          4 eggs
          6 egg yolks
          1/2 tsp salt
          3/4 cup melted unsalted butter
          2 tbsp meyer lemon zest

          Combine all ingredients in a double boiler over simmering water. Whisk until thick. It'll look very weird and separated at first, but after 15 minutes or so it'll come together. Cool and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before first use. Keeps for 1 month if kept tightly covered and refrigerated.

      2. I did this a few years ago and at that time, most of the research I found said that canning lemon curd was dangerous because the acidity may not be high enough to prevent bacterial growth in the butter and eggs. Commercial products are safe because they use canning equipment that reaches higher pressures and temperatures than you can achieve at home.

        What I ended up doing was make my meyer lemon curd and can just like I would fruit preserves. But, I kept the jars refrigerated thereafter and instructed my giftees to do the same, and to eat within 30 days. Nobody got sick and as far as I know, everyone enjoyed it. Along with the curd I gave everyone a can of homemade scone mix, with instructions printed on the can telling them what liquids to add and how to bake them. One person even said they liked that they had to eat it quickly, otherwise it probably would have migrated to the back of their pantry and been thrown away five years later like so many other canned food gifts. But as you can imagine, it was a little awkward giving refrigerated gifts.

        I just did a search and found a recipe written by the National Center for Home Food Preservation. Link is below. It calls for using bottled lemon juice to ensure adequate acidity, to which I would respond it's not even worth making. If you're using meyers, which have even less acidity than regular lemons, you're risking it even more. If you had some way of measuring acidity, you might be able to use citric or ascorbic acid to boost it high enough, but that's just a guess on my part.



        2 Replies
        1. re: nja

          can you share your home made scone mix recipe? I want to do the same, but most recipe calls for a lot of stuff that I can't pack, like eggs, butter or cream.

          1. re: Wendy Lai

            I still haven't settled upon a scone recipe that I really like. I've been experimenting with many (some I found here, others from across the web) and can't remember which one I used for the gifts. But basically all I did was mix all of the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, etc) and put it all in a jar. Then I attached a little set of instructions on how to finish the scones. So the giftees had to supply their own cream/buttermilk/butter/milk/etc. I wish I could be more helpful but all I could do now is run a search and give you a random recipe.


        2. It lasts for quite a long time - at least a month.

          And I would guess that the store-bought versions might be (ultra) pasteurized? (Or at least the eggs and juice might be.)


          1. Most recipes for home made lemon curd state that it should be kept (refrigerated for no more than a week), but can be frozen as well. I've kept it refrigerated for a bit longer than one week, but I feel it's a bit dodgy to hang on to it for much longer.

            I grew up in London, where we made lemon curd almost weekly when I was growing up. I've continued to make it after moving to the US, but only recently came across the best-ever recipe for foolproof, light and delicious lemon curd -- it has in the perfect consistency every time, and the flavors are beautifully balanced -- it was a revelation. The secret? You first cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer, then beat in the eggs and lemon juice BEFORE you start cooking (always add the zest AFTER you take the curd off the heat). If preferred, you can substitute lime juice for the lemon juice in equal measure. Wish I'd had this recipe years ago! Check it out here: