Scratch Bakers Help: Lemon Curd Came Out Too Tart!

Baking By FromScratchSF Updated 21 Sep 2011 , 8:24pm by cakestyles

FromScratchSF Posted 20 Sep 2011 , 10:27pm
post #1 of 9

I have a wedding this weekend and 2 days ago I made about a 1/2 gallon of lemon curd. I had a feeling the lemons I were using were super tart, but didn't make any adjustments to my recipe. I tasted it when it was done and it was fine. Well, as you know, lemon curd develops flavor over a few days so I just checked it today and OMG it's super tart. Good, but very overpowering, I know it's way too tart to put between layers of cake. Any suggestions on how to lighten it up? I was thinking of adding some butter but am afraid of turning it into buttercream. Bride ordered curd, so curd she must have...

I really don't want to remake this! It's 2 lbs of egg yolks alone!


8 replies
Ursula40 Posted 20 Sep 2011 , 11:31pm
post #2 of 9

Add some more sugar to counterbalance the sourness? You'll probably have to heat or at least warm it up a bit to dissolve the sugar, go with icing sugar dissolves faster

cakestyles Posted 20 Sep 2011 , 11:33pm
post #3 of 9

I've had pretty good luck making a simple syrup and using that to sweeten the curd.

I had to reheat the curd gently, add the syrup and add a bit of cornstarch to thicken.

It worked out well. I've done it with lime curd, but not lemon.

Good luck!

FromScratchSF Posted 21 Sep 2011 , 1:45am
post #4 of 9

Good idea with the simple syrup, maybe mixed with melted butter it'll do the trick? I'll let you know, thanks!

scp1127 Posted 21 Sep 2011 , 11:05am
post #5 of 9

I have been trying to develop a lemon curd that is extra tart. Was it just the lemons? I hate sweet curd added to IMBC. It adds too much sweetness.
As for sweetening it up, I'm not sure about adding to it. You will upset the balance of thickeners and all of those ingredients were changed in the cooking process. I suggest making some sweet curd and adding it to the original recipe. This would be the only way to keep it all cohesive.

FromScratchSF Posted 21 Sep 2011 , 2:26pm
post #6 of 9

I use RLB recipe, to get it more tart I cook it with zest, but because cooked zest can be bitter I strain it out and add fresh zest at the end, which softens in the warm curd without cooking it. It adds a ton of flavor and I like the added texture, but I think the lemons I used were super strong or maybe I used too much zest and wasn't paying attention? Anyway I technically over cook my curd so it's extra thick, so I think I can get away with adding something to it to try and cut the tart a little bit. We'll see later today!

FromScratchSF Posted 21 Sep 2011 , 2:26pm
post #7 of 9

Oh, and what is sweet curd? Is that just a sweet lemon curd?

scp1127 Posted 21 Sep 2011 , 5:23pm
post #8 of 9

FromScratch, just about every curd recipe is the same and the results are similar. Before I baked exclusively from scratch, I once added Dickenson curd to my mom's IMBC on her birthday cake. I bake her a variation of Woody's cake from Rose's Heavenly Cakes. My main difference is a thin layer of raspberry jam on one layer. When I make my own curd, it isn't near as tart as Dickenson which is perfect in tartness for the IMBC. I just haven't persued this recipe to the end yet. Obviously less sugar and more juice will get close, but I think just more juice and more thickening agent is more correct. The addition of the zest sounds interesting.

Try Dickenson's in your buttercream and you will see what I'm trying to achieve. Obviously not good for filling if it's that tart.

I also have Olive Nation extract that packs a lot of flavor. I haven't tried that addition either.

cakestyles Posted 21 Sep 2011 , 8:24pm
post #9 of 9

I love using zest in my curd as well. I did that in the orange curd I made earlier in the week and it was phenomenal.

I add it after the curd is cooked but still very hot so that the flavor of the zest is intensified.

Have you ladies tried adding some Limoncello to your lemon curd? I highly recommend.

Quote by @%username% on %date%