It started with a doughnut. It was the last one, and it sat there, right next to the till, as I waited to pay for my meal. The doughnut oozed a luscious, purple cream, which upon closer enquiry turned out to be blackberry curd. Not normally prone to sweet impulse purchases, I just had to try it. The curd was delightfully tart, but not too tart, providing a wonderful foil to the sweetness of the doughnut. Mulberries are in season at the moment, and I thought that if blackberry curd could be a thing, why not mulberry curd.
As a child, we would climb the large mulberry tree in the middle of the chicken run, wedge ourselves in a fork of the tree and feast on the many plump, deep purple berries within our reach. We would return home, our clothes covered in pinky-purple blotches that were resistant to most efforts of removal. However, until I had the idea for mulberry curd, the only thing I had have ever actually made with mulberries was mulberries jam.
With abundance comes a lack of appreciation. Now that I actually want mulberries I don’t have ready access to them. We don’t have a mulberry tree of our own (yet … I’m working on Mr Grumpy), so I have been out raiding the neighbourhood for fresh berries. After picking my neighbour’s tree clean of ripe fruit, I ventured further from home hoping to find enough berries to make another batch of curd. I knew of a tree that overhung one of the suburban lane-ways, and thought I had timed my foray well enough so as to limit my chances of discovery, yet still managed to be sprung by someone I knew. Good thing lane-ways are considered public property in Perth, and anything overhanging the fence is fair game.
It turns out that mulberry curd is very, very good. Just as good as lime curd. I’ve been doling jars out to the neighbours, which have received rave reviews. I love it on scones, swirled through yoghurt, stuffed into crepes, or even just spread on toast. And if you have a surplus of mulberries, can I suggest doughnuts.
Frozen mulberries are readily substituted for fresh in this recipe. I like to stock the freezer when mulberries are in season, so I can make this curd whenever the mood strikes. If you can locate mulberries, use any other berry instead. You may just need to play around with the sugar levels depending on the sweetness of the berries.
Use standard white castor sugar in place of the golden caster sugar.
Tips for Great Fresh Mulberry Curd
This curd contains a lot less sugar than citrus curds, and will therefore not keep as well. Eat the curd within two to three weeks of making it. If you can’t eat it within that time, share with your neighbours – they will love you.
Many curd recipes advise you to sieve the eggs prior to adding them to the butter and sugar. The reason for this is to avoid little clumps of egg white in your finished product. I find if you whisk the eggs enough before adding them to the butter/sugar you can avoid this problem. If you do end up with wispy bits (and you care), you can sieve the curd prior to putting it in the jars.
Mulberries vary in sweetness, so I have provided a range in the recipe for the amount of sugar required. Start with the lower amount, and taste the curd after about 15 minutes of cooking. You want it to be tart, but not so tart it makes your tongue shrivel. Add more sugar at this point if required.
I prefer to make the mulberry curd in the Thermomix as it is easier, but have a provided the stove-top version below if you don’t have a machine.
Simple & Delicious Fresh Mulberry Curd
- 400 g (3 cups) mulberries
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 175 g ( 3/4 cup) butter room temperature
- 100 - 150 g (1/2 - 3/4 cup) golden castor sugar
- 4 large eggs approximately 225ml (1 cup)
- You will also need 5-6 125ml glass jars and lids.
- Preheat the oven to 120C.
- Wash the jars and place them in the oven for 20 minutes. Turn the oven off but do not remove the jars.
- Boil the lids in a saucepan for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat but do not drain the water.
To make the mulberry puree
- Wash the mulberries, then place the wet mulberries in a small saucepan.
- Simmer on a medium heat for 5 - 10 minutes, or until the mulberries have softened and are starting to fall apart.
- Push the mulberry pulp through a fine sieve with a spoon into a bowl. This will separate any seeds and stalks from the puree. Reserve the puree and discard any solids left in the sieve. I typically have about 1 to 2 Tablespoons of pulp left that I discard.
- Allow the puree to cool before proceeding. This is important as the puree will curdle the eggs if it is too hot.
To make mulberry curd in the Thermomix
- Insert the Butterfly into the Thermomix bowl.
- Add all the ingredients to the Thermomix bowl.
- Cook at 80C for 20 minutes on Speed 3.
- The mixture will have thickened, and should coat the back of the spoon. If not, cook in 2 minute increments at 80C until the desired thickness is achieved.
To make the mulberry curd on the Stove Top
- Place the mulberry puree, lemon juice, sugar, and butter in bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water.
- Stir until the butter is melted and the sugar has dissolved.
- Whisk the eggs until frothy then pour into the mulberry puree. Stir in gently.
- Stir continuously until the mixture has thickened and coats the back of a spoon. Do not allow the mixture to boil or it will curdle.
- Remove the jars from the oven and ladle the curd into the warm jars.
- Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean cloth to remove any spills.
- Remove the lids from the saucepan, shake them to remove excess water and seal the jars.
- Allow to cool then store in the fridge.
Mulberries vary in sweetness, so I have provided a range for the sugar. Start with the lower amount, and taste the curd after about 15 minutes of cooking. You want it to be tart, but not so tart it makes your tongue shrivel. Add more sugar at this point if required.
You can make the mulberry puree in the Thermomix, however I still like to sieve the puree before proceeding with the curd.
If you do use the Thermomix to make the puree, make sure you allow the machine and the puree to cool before proceeding with the recipe, or the eggs will curdle.