Recipe AND Taste Test: Key Lime Curd

We’re invited over to my good friends Florence and Ben’s house tonight for dinner.  Florence loved my key lime cupcakes when I made them originally and has mentioned many times that she’d love for me to make them again, so when I saw this bag of key limes when I was at Galen’s last weekend, I had to pick them up to make a batch to bring to dinner.

The secret to the key lime cupcakes is the key lime curd.  A curd is a pretty simple thing to make, and although I’ve seen store-bought versions of the same thing, because it only takes a few minutes to make a delicious and simple curd of my own, I have never used the store version.

The ECBF likes to take full credit for the curd because he is usually the one responsible for squeezing the juice out of the little suckers – but we’re in a fight over my last post, so I was on my own last night.

It takes an entire bag of key limes just to get the 2/3 cup of key lime juice needed for the curd.  That’s the only hard part of this recipe.  If you have a paper cut, I strongly recommend gloves.

Gotta grate these little guys for zest

My mom spends winters in Florida (the home of key-limey goodness) so when she saw a jar of key lime curd, she picked it up for me – with the idea that it would save me a bunch of time when I wanted to whip up a batch of cupcakes.  Like most store-bought jarred things, there are about 10 more ingredients in this key lime curd than in my version.  I decided that we should do a little side-by-side comparison at the dinner party. 


Ben had a lot to say about the aroma of the store-bought stuff.  He said it smelled of “fresh cut key limes”.  Mine didn’t.  But when it came to the taste-test itself, my curd was the clear winner. 

Dueling Curds

The texture of the two, although similar, varied in that mine wasn’t as smooth.  But mine had the “kapow” of the tart key lime flavour and the store-bought version couldn’t compare.

The cupcakes, overall, were a hit.  And the curd is so simple I thought I should share it with you for you to try for yourselves, enjoy!

Key Lime Curd

6 TBSP butter

3 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

2/3 cup fresh key lime juice

2 tsp key lime zest

Over low heat, melt butter in small saucepan.  Add remaining ingredients and whisk continuously until thickened (approximately 15 minutes).  Allow to cool in pan then transfer to a glass jar and refrigerate until use.  Will last about a month in the fridge.

I use this curd as a cupcake filling.  I also use it in the buttercream, for a mild key lime flavour.  I’m not sure what other applications it might have.  Thoughts?

P.S.  I got this recipe from somewhere, it is not my own – but for the life of me I can not recall where.  It’s a handwritten note in one of my baking binders.

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