It’s usually this time of year — mid January — that I get on my Meyer Lemon kick. Maybe it’s because these gems are so bright and colorful when New England is particularly dreary. Or maybe it’s because they are so plentiful in the shops right now — all three of my regular stores had them on sale this week. So I’m going on a little bit of a Meyer Lemon overload for the next few days. Here are two ways to keep them going for a few weeks longs — Meyer Lemon Sugar, which is perfect on fruit or mixed into tea and Meyer Lemon Curd, which is spectacular on fruit, in oatmeal, on toast or in yogurt.
Meyer Lemon Sugar
3 cups sugar
6 meyer lemons worth of zest, very finely zested
Preheat oven to 150F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
In a work bowl, combine lemon zest and sugar. Massage the zest and the sugar together until combined, then spread it onto the prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the zest has dried. Cool, then crumble the lemon sugar in your hands until it is free of lumps. Transfer to airtight jars and store at room temperature.
6 egg yolks
1 cup Meyer lemon juice
3 tablespoons finely grated Meyer lemon zest
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 stick of butter, cut into small cubes
Combine the egg yolks, juice, zest and sugar in a medium saucepan and whisk together until smooth (this will help avoid chunky bits of cooked egg yolk). Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture coats the back of a spoon (about 8-9 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in the butter, one cube at a time, making sure that the butter melts completely before adding the next piece.
Pour the lemon curd through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium work bowl. This will catch any big zest and any bit of unsightly thickened eggs. Then, pour finished lemon curd into clean containers and either continue your usual canning process, or cover with a layer of plastic wrap that’s been placed directly on the surface of the curd. Keep refrigerated.