This past weekend has been a great one, nothing spectacular has happened but I have got stuff done that I have been meaning to do forever. When we moved into our house a year ago we didn’t quite know where to start because there was so much to do. We did know, however, that it would not be the garden, heating after all is slightly more important. Over time we have learnt that the previous owner was a keen gardner until he was too old to be able to keep it up, though planting an evergreen tree and bush slap bang in the middle of the lawn seems slightly strange. So after 13 months of owning the house and grumbling about this tree we finally cut it down on Saturday. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the green it gave the garden and the fact that the birds loved it and I really hope to give them back an even better place to nest eventually. What I did not enjoy was the fact it carved our garden in two. It does feel great to have it down and makes me want to think more about what we want from the garden in the future – although one thing Dave and I have agreed on is a vegetable patch.
To fuel this gardening spree (is there such a thing?) we took a trip to Baker Girl at Wykham Park Farm – a wonderful bakery which bakes awesome real bread fresh along with other delights such as cinnamon buns, morning buns and I hear even doughnuts on some days. We love this place and one day I hope to bring you guys a review because I honestly think if you live in the area or are ever passing by it is worth a visit. Next door is Wykham park Farm Shop and we always pop in when we pass, mainly I must admit for the vegetables (and cheese from time to time). On Saturday there was an abundance which filled me with joy on such a chilly day, but what got me really excited was the seville oranges and the blood oranges. Blood oranges I adore, they are not in season long but I always try to make the most of them. Seville oranges, however, I have never really seen and so, feeling brave, I thought I would get some not really knowing what on earth I was going to do with them.
When I got home I was so excited, I put it out to twitter and the lovely Becs got back suggesting orange curd. It piqued my interest, just before Christmas I was thinking about making some homemade lemon curd to make Nigella’s gorgeous looking pavlova but time flew by and I never quite got around to it. So, let’s give it a go with Seville oranges. I am so glad I did and I will now be trying to make every kind of fruit into a curd. I saw a wonderful passionfruit one as I was doing my research, which sounds delightful. This has so far been sandwiched between vanilla and almond cookies, perfect, and eaten straight from the jar (I am not ashamed). I imagine this would be fantastic on scones with some clotted cream, layered up between some orange sponge cake or even do as Becs suggested and layer in between slices of chocolate cake. I think essentially whatever you do with it this will be a wonderful addition.
I had a look online for some recipes and ended up tweaking the amounts of things etc, but the method is all down to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. If you come across some Seville oranges I whole heartedly recommend this, it is smooth, rich and tangy. I must admit D is not a massive fan but don’t let that put you off, if you like tangy and citrus flavours this will be right up your street.
Seville Orange Curd | 1 Jar
- 100ml Seville Orange Juice and grated zest of one
- 50g Unsalted Butter
- 150g Caster Sugar
- 2 Whole Free Range Eggs
- Ensure you have a prepared sterilised jar ready.
- Grate the zest of one orange into a bowl and add the juice, sugar and butter.
- Put bowl over a pan of barely simmering water (don’t let the bottom of the bowl touch the water).
- In a separate bowl beat the eggs.
- Once the butter is melted add the eggs through a sieve whilst continually whisking the mixture (this tip is direct from Hugh’s recipe linked above and it is just brilliant).
- After all the egg has dripped through begin gently stirring with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. If you have a sugar thermometer it should read between 82-84 degrees. This should take about 10 minutes.
- Pour into sterilised jars and seal. Once open keep it in the fridge.