Thursday, September 16, 2010

Next Lime, Things'll Be Different

Yesterday there was a big bowl of limes on my counter. I found a Lime Marmalade recipe in a book I have on preserving, and there was a Lime Curd recipe on the facing page. Between the two of them, I felt I would make good use of the limes and have a couple of tasty treats to stash in my pantry to boot. So much enthusiasm, so much eagerness and optimism. There's only one place for all that unabashed positiveness to go... yep, right into a brick wall.

You see, the Lime Marmalade turned out beautifully except for one little detail... it's bitter. B-I-T-T-E-R. And I can't stop moping like a small child. Out came the old "kick me, I had a food-fail" mental whine-list. It goes something like this: What a waste of... time, fruit, sugar, canning lids, electricity, and oh, all that clean-up afterward... for nothing! Ugh! (now repeat multiple times)

Was it any wonder that I had major amounts of trepidation about making the lime curd today? I dragged my feet for as long as I could but I knew that if I didn't make it today, it just wasn't going to happen. I hung what little hope I had on the stick of butter that goes in it. Marmalade has no butter in it, but curd does... and butter makes everything better, right? With a stick of butter as my shield and banner, I marched myself back into the canning-arena (formerly known as my kitchen).

The Lime Curd came out victorious: sweet, tart, and in a word, scrum-diddley-icious! Yes, that's a word (it's possibly even two or three words). It wasn't even finished cooking when I first tasted it, and quite literally, danced. I did, I danced. Then I called Hubs in and had him taste it. Then we just stood there nodding with silly looks on our faces like demented bobble-head dolls. Really happy demented bobble-head dolls.

And now here I am with seven jars of Nasty-Bitterness and three jars of My-Oh-My. Isn't that just so much like life? But just like life, those three good jars somehow more than make up for the seven bad jars. Due to some bizarre mental defense-mechanism, I don't even remember the other thing I made with the limes... all I can see, with glowing rays of sunlight streaming across them, are three lovely little jars of Lime Curd.

Yesterday there was a big bowl of limes on my counter, and today I made Lime Curd. And it turned out really really good. And I'm happy.

Lime Shred Marmalade and Lime Curd from the book Sensational Preserves by Hilaire Walden (1995).

My Notes: I did not use the Kaffir limes that were mentioned in the recipe since they were presented as an option, and I didn't have any besides. I have since found evidence that had I soaked the lime peel overnight, it would have lost much of it's bitterness. Oh well, next time right?... but then if faced with that many limes again, I might just make a ginormous batch of mojitos instead. Wanna come over?

*Burning question for the ages: Why is it that every time I can something, one jar doesn't seal? No matter what it is I'm canning, what size, or how many... one single solitary jar won't seal, pop, or ping. Just one. Every time. Weird.
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  1. I wonder if you could use the marmalade as a topping for cheese. Or a Brie lime quesadilla? Or in the slowcooker with chicken and apples and honey.

  2. Kristin: Seriously, what doesn't go with brie? I just love all your ideas! If you're not careful though, you might just find a case of this stuff on your doorstep!

    It has such a bitter edge (even for a marmalade), but I can't bring myself to throw it out until I've at least tried to use it in something! We're going to try making mojitos with it first, ha ha. If we're successful, I'll relabel it and call it a cocktail mix!

  3. Hey Stephanie, I can the one rogue jar when I am canning too. It must be in the ozone layer! Either that or it is completely rebelling and trying to get into some salsa or something instead. Go figure! I wonder if there will be any curd left when I visit so that I too can become "bobble-headed"?

  4. Laura: I always like to think that the single unsealed jar is a gift for me... maybe I do intentionally?

    I'll try to save you a bit; we're not making anything with it, just dipping in the jar with spoons!:)

  5. Hi Steph, thanks for the Lime Curd recipe...My Oh My indeed! It has a sweet, tangy, zesty creaminess that just speaks volumes to me. Mom licked the bowl and in was all I could do to can it. Now I need to make some scones...


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