Ginger Grapefruit Curd Recipe
A vibrant ginger grapefruit curd recipe & scans from my Marrakesh photographs.
If this post doesn't bring my server to its knees, I don't know what will. Between scans of photos from my visit to Morocco, and shots of the grapefruit curd I've been making, I went a bit overkill on the photo front. Here's the back-story. One afternoon, while I was in Morocco, Maryam kindly brought us tea and a platter of incredible lemon bars. The lemon flavor of the curd was intense and bright, made from citrus picked on the property. The shortbread foundation, extra thick and structured - think deep-dish lemon bar perfection. And there I found myself, standing in the North African sun, thinking about all the citrus that would waiting for me when I got home, and all the different curds I would make.
And I did. I made minneola curd, blood orange curd, lemon curd with a kiss of clove, and this one, ginger grapefruit curd. I think it's my favorite, an intense, assertive hit of grapefruit with enough ginger to notice. It begs to be slathered on scones, biscuits, toast, and English muffins. Wayne puts it on pizzelles. I swirl it into Greek yogurt. And we topped waffles with it when my family (including my fantastic Boise-based aunt) came to brunch over the weekend. You can sweeten this curd with granulated sugar or honey, and I include instructions for both down below. In general, I use a one-pan method to make curd, which (I hope) makes things easy for you - not fussy or technical.
While I was in Morocco I shot with my Polaroid Land camera quite a lot. It takes pack film which is still readily available. Each shot develops over the course of a few minutes, and you peel it away from its backing. You can see my shots spread out on the table up above (land cam shots on the right). I love this camera, but in all honesty, it is not a system for the faint of heart. I carry an external light meter/timer, sizable packs of film, lens adapters/rangefinders, bags for the trash the film produces, and a small box to protect the damp prints from scratches and dirt. The film is also temperature sensitive. Beyond that, the list of issues goes on - but I love the little prints it makes, and the feel they have. Hopefully some of that magic is retained in a few of these scans - a handful of my favorites from this trip.
These three shots (above) were shot at Peacock Pavilions - our beautiful home base while we were in Marrakesh. We'd have incredible lunches out on the terrace before venturing into town.
Beautiful arm candy (above) courtesy of the incredibly talented Jen Altman. She's also an excellent roommate. As was Amy, in the golden light down below.
There are a thousand things I saw that I didn't take pictures of. You can't capture the smell of wood/trash burning, or the call of roosters at dawn. And the beauty of an end-of-day call to prayer broadcast across a public square teeming with people is a reason in itself to travel and witness. The sound echoes off buildings and fills the air, and so much else falls away. From the car I saw goats eating olives from low-slung orchard branches, and families congregating in parks at dusk. On foot, the endless heckling of tourists in the souks, carts piled high with purple prickly pears, and curious, chatty shopkeepers. The pastry shops were exquisite, but often dark enough that I didn't bother asking to shoot a few frames.
I look forward to returning someday - I'd also love to visit Fez, a city that has been on my travel wishlist for a long time. In the meantime, I'll keep cooking from my stack of Moroccan cookbooks so I have a deeper understanding when I do return - a shortlist of a few of my favorites for those of you who are interested (The Food of Morocco, Mourad: New Moroccan, Arabesque, and A Month in Marrakesh). Also! Paula Wolfert maintains a fantastic Facebook group focused on Moroccan cooking, it's an incredible resource that you might want to check out if you're interested in diving deeper. -h
Ginger Grapefruit Curd
HS: I simmer my grapefruit juice here so it reduces and concentrates (I do this with any citrus curd I make). The flavor of the curd is better, the color deeper. That said, if you don't have time (or the inclination) to do this step, just start with 1/2 cup / 120 ml of freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, strained. Your curd with still be perfectly good. As far as sweeteners go, I use granulated sugar, or honey, or a blend of the two. I tend to mix it up depending on the citrus I'm using. This curd is great made with sugar or honey. If using honey, I use less because the flavor is so much more pronounced, and honey is sweeter. That said, I think I tend to go easy on the sweetener in general compared to other curd recipes - trying to strike a balance, avoiding cloying sweetness. Try it this way and feel free to adjust the sweetness in future batches to your liking. I stay clear of brown sugar or maple syrup here just because it muddies the color. What else? Method: I cream, then combine ingredients in a stainless steel mixing bowl here, you can use the bowl from your stand mixer if you like. Then, move that bowl over a saucepan of boiling water (as a makeshift double boiler), to keep the heat gentle. Go from there. It's easy, and keeps bowl-cleaning to a minimum.
1 cup / 240 ml freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, strained
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp / soft
1/2 cup / 3.5 oz / 100 g granulated sugar OR 1/4 cup / 60 ml honey
2 large egg yolks, preferably room temp
2 large eggs , preferably room temp
1/8 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice, strained
1 tablespoon fresh ginger juice (made by pressing grated ginger through a strainer)
Simmer the grapefruit juice in a small saucepan, reducing to 1/2 cup / 120 ml. Let it cool a bit.
Cream the butter in a medium stainless steel bowl (note: you'll use this bowl as a makeshift double-boiler later). Add the sugar and beat until fluffy and light. Add the yolks, and then the eggs one at a time, beating well to incorporate after each addition. Stir in the salt, and then gradually add the grapefruit juice, lemon juice, and ginger juice - working the juice in as you go.
Rinse out the small saucepan you used earlier, and fill 1/3 of the way full with water. Bring to a simmer, and place your stainless steel bowl of curd on top of it. Stir constantly, and heat the curd slowly enough that the sugar (if you used it) has time to dissolve. This step usually takes me about ten minutes. Pull the curd from the heat when it is just thick enough to coat your spoon - my thermometer usually reads ~166F (it will continue to climb a bit off heat, keep that in mind). Your curd will thick substantially as it cools.
There's no need to strain it, unless you somehow ended up with a few lumps (which you shouldn't). And it keeps refrigerated for a week, or up to a month in the freezer. I love it warm or cold.
Makes about 2 cups.
Prep time: 5 minutes - Cook time: 10 minutes
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I love the way you write about your travels! (I was just thinking in my head that you should most definitely write novels.) I will have to try this curd. I never in my life would have thought to use something other than lemons.
Amazing pics!! I did recently a passion fruit curd... lovely idea I think!
Such stunning images that capture a certain type of magic!
The thought of this curd in Greek yogurt sounds like the ultimate March breakfast to beat away the winter doldrums. I love your photos from Morocco and I completely understand what you didn't take photos of. There is something about that acridity of trash/wood fires that somehow adds a mystical earthiness to the overall atmosphere while traveling. Whenever I smell that distinct scent of burning, I'm immediately taken back to night market eating during winter in the town I lived in in China. I always tried to take photos, but the essence never felt truly captured. I decided it was best to give up and just truly throw myself in the moment instead. I think it turned out much better because the image and feeling I have in my head is probably ten times better than anything I could have ever captured. Thank you for sharing your experiences!
hi heidi - these are such breathtaking photos... incredible light, dreamy colors. i wish i could have squeezed a few days in morocco in my next trip. as for the curd, i must admit i rarely make citrus curds (i get put off by the amount of sugar) but i may have to try it now... perhaps using yuzu, which doesn't work like grapefruit exactly, but simply because i have a stock of it that needs to be used soon. thanks ever so much for inspirations xx
HS: Chika! Let me know how the yuzu version is if you try it - sounds fantastic :) hope all is well with you. xoxo
Your photos are amazing!! I felt like I was taking a stroll through Morocco while reading your post. I've never actually had lemon curd before - I'll have to give this recipe a try!
I absolutely adore the picture you took of yourself in the mirror: it's gorgeous! I'm not a big fan of lemon curd...but maybe I'll fall in love with this grapefruit one? Must give it a try!
This ginger grapefruit curd looks amazing. I love your cooking style and everything I make from your book and site turns out so perfectly. Thanks for all the inspiration.
Hi Heidi, just wanted to let you know that I got your cookbooks in the mail yesterday and they are so beautiful! I cannot wait to try some of the recipes out. Your blog is almost the only place I turn to recipes these days. My bf loves grapefruit so I will def. try this out! I wanted to ask you a sort of specific question if you have the time. My boyfriend cannot eat leafy greens (spinach, celery, cabbage, lettuce etc.) due to Crohn's disease. A lot of your recipes call for leafy greens so I try to substitute. Sometimes we use leafy herbs (which works fine for some arance reason), sometimes a peeled summer squash. I was wondering if you had any additional ideas or insights on what might be used as a substitute? Thank you so much for this blog, it brings joy to my life and so many others.
I just got back from a trip to Morocco; a month by myself, learning about a different culture and learning much more about myself. I met the most wonderful people and I ache so much, having to stay in rainy grey Northern Europe after an incredible vacation - short: thank you.
Lovely photos and lovely words, Heidi. Thanks for sharing - for a brief moment as I scrolled through your post, I felt like I was there.
Looks like that camera is worth the extra effort. Those photos are so beautiful and have so much character.
I'm drooling! Perfect timing - I just got gifted a ton of grapefruit and will have to try this. YUM! I love the vicarious travel too - thank you, thank you!
That is arm candy, alright. Beautiful bracelets. And from the old cameras to the new iphones, love the range. You always bring me to another dreamy world. Thanks, Heidi, for your posts!
Amazing photographs! You have such a talent! And this ginger grapefruit curd can not get into my fridge fast enough!
Amazing photos!!! I've never thought about curd in any other form but lemon, this grapefruit one is great.
these photos are so so gorgeous! Morocco is definitely on my travel wish list...
You've inspired me to ask my dad for his old SX-70 (it's probably in a drawer somewhere). And I need to give this recipe a try, vegan-style (so my daughter can partake). Maybe I'll make both kinds. Thanks for the recipe.
Ginger grapefruit curd sounds amazing! I want to dunk pound cake in it. Or spread it over homemade English muffins. So many possibilities. I'm looking forward to seeing more pictures from your trip. As a poor college student, I have to travel vicariously through others.
breathtaking photos. stunning. leaves me wanting more while i devour curd topped greek yogurt, my favorite.
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