Thursday, February 4, 2016

The Sour Side of Life

When I first found out I had cancer, I wasn't ready for all the changes in my life it would bring.

Some, I knew about.  The  masectomy of course.  I knew they were taking ALL of the breast.  I was left with a Frankenstein like Barbie boob.  For a while only, until after the reconstruction.  We, me and my husband, were going into the initial surgery not knowing what to expect after.  When you have a masectomy, they do a pathology on the removed tissue in the operating room. It is at this time that your cancer is finally staged.  Up until then, it is a guessing game.

My cancer was finally staged as Stage II Lobular Breast cancer.  My cancer was estrogen and progesterone receptive.  Meaning the hormones my body produced were "feeding" the cancer and causing it to grow.  The cancer was Stage II due to the size, 3.8 cm.  They removed the sentinel nodes and the cancer hadn't spread to there, so the lymph node was clean.  There was a little twist though.  They also found cancer in the ductal glands that was just forming.  I didn't need chemo or radiation though, since I didn't score high enough.  My oncologist said that at my young age, my score didn't warrant either.  God I love it when he calls me young!

Why the little lesson in cancer?  It's a prelude dahlings.  You see my taste changed, among other things.   I craved SOMETHING.  It drove me crazy trying to find it out.

We went out to lunch one day.  No place special.  This little lake seafood cafe by our house.  We got our fish dinners and there on the plate was something that was going to change my life.  That innocent little yellow perfect wedge was what I had been craving.

Those beautiful, yellow, perfect orbs hold the key to my salvation.  The sweet, tangy liquid held beneath it's yellow skin is what I've been craving.

Is that not one of the most beautiful things you have ever seen?!

Ok, so maybe I get a little weak in the knees over them.  I always loved lemons.  Who would have thunk that during menopause, these would satisfy my soul like chocolate would?

Enough of my love affair with lemon.  This story is leading somewhere.

Pinky promise....

Every time I go shopping, lemons are always on my list. I buy lots of them every week.  I am a lemon snob though.  I don't buy the prebagged ones. Even if they are cheaper.  I like to choose my own lemons. You, unfortunately, can just squirt lemon on everything.  Somethings just need a special kind of touch.

Enter lemon curd.

I've had people that lemon curd is hard to make.


It's so easy!  So I am going to show you a foolproof way to make lemon curd.

Lemon Curd
6 Tablespoons butter at room temp
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Let your butter set out over night.  That way it will get nice and soft.  Make sure you measure it out.  It's easier to cut straight out of the fridge.  I also use unsalted butter.  It will be about 6 lemons to get your juice.  The secret to juicing a lemon is before you cut it in half, press and roll it on the counter.  Soften that baby up!  Also, wash the outside.  You are going to need it for the zest.  I use a micrograter for the zest.  You only want the yellow part.  No white here!

Now that you are all prepped and ready to go, cream your butter and sugar together in a mixer.  Get it nice and smooth.  Add your egg yolks one at a time.  Then the eggs.  Mix it all together and let everyone get to know each other for a minute or so.  

Now, add your freshly squeezed lemon juice.

It should look somewhat like this and you are probably thinking "oh crap!  screwed it up!"  Well dahling, you are right on track!  Transfer everything to a saucepan and heat over a low heat to get it all melty.

Now turn up the heat a bit.  Not much.  The sauce is going to thicken now.  Stir it constantly so you don't burn it.  No one likes burnt lemon curd.

Now when your spoon leaves a trail, you are done!  Well almost....  Stir in the lemon zest.  Once again, transfer it to another bowl, I use my glass measuring cup, cover and let cool.  Its important to cover so you don't get a skin on the top.  I lay the plastic wrap on top of the curd to make sure there is no skin.

Once it is cooled, you can put into little jars and store in the fridge.  Supposedly it will last a few weeks.  Mine is never in there for that long.  It is good on biscuits, waffles and blueberry scones.


Know what else it is good for?

Donut filling!

Like in paczki....

Fat Tuesday is just around the corner too.


I think not....



Pinky at Designs by Pinky said...

Thanks for the recipe. That is weird that you crave lemons of all things!!:)

bj said...

I love ANYthing lemon and really love lemon curd...I buy mine at the store but sure going to try your recipe. Sounds sooo good

Red Couch Recipes said...

It seems like so long since we have communicated via blogging. I am sorry to hear about your cancer diagnosis, but glad that you must be feeling good enough to blog. I made some lemon chicken the other day and basked in using the lemons. Your curd looks delicious, and what a healthy thing to crave. I crave chocolate. So glad to hear from you!