I received a box of Aussie Apples last week. And when I say box I perhaps should clarify that by saying it’s a massive box which contained over 80 apples! With such inspiration it was impossible to not want to do some wonderful things with them. Of course there’s the trusty favourite apple cake to make, but I wanted to try something a little bit different, so I thought why not try some apple curd.
Apple curd is not something I had heard of before, and with a long held love of lemon curd I wanted to try out an apple version. Curds are usually based on fruit juices, but I didn’t want to just juice the apples, I wanted to use the whole apple in my curd. So I sliced up apples and cooked them slowly on the stove top, covered, with a small amount of water, enabling them to soften and completely breakdown. Once the apples had broken down I set them aside to cool before I made my curd. When the curd was ready I tried my first taste and it was delicious. It has a light apple taste and is velvety meltingly soft and it’s not overly sweet either.
There are many ways to use curd, and in particular this apple curd would be beautiful with meringues, spread on toast, as a beautiful pancake filling, mix it into creamy thick Greek yoghurt, or use it as a cupcakes filling, but I decided to go down the classic route and serve the curd with scones.
Scones are that quintessential classic that everyone loves, of which countless variations seem to exist. Some recipes use butter and others use cream, some call for sugar to be added whilst others omit it all together. There are versions of lemonade scones, scones made with soda water and scones made with countless different ingredients. But me, as far as I am concerned it’s hard to beat a good classic scone. For my scones I always add a little sugar and I use cream in place of butter, and for these scones I used some beautiful Maleny Guernsey cream that gave the scones a gorgeous yellow tint. I also use an egg. There was a time when I didn’t use egg in my scone mix and while my scones tasted fine they were never as good or as light as the scones my Mum made so one day I asked her what her secret was. She told me she always added an egg regardless of whether a recipe called for it or not. So the next time I made scones I added and egg and low and behold they were just like the scones Mum made.
Everyone has a tip for making perfect scones. What are yours?
- APPLE CURD:
- 3 large apples, peeled, cored and sliced
- 2 tbs of water
- 2 eggs, plus 2 egg yolks
- 160g caster sugar
- 80g butter
- 4 cups self raising flour
- 2½ tbs of caster sugar
- a pinch of salt
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup cream
- ½ cup of milk
- To make the apple curd place the apple slices and water in a saucepan over a very low heat. Cover with a lid and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the apple is completely broken down. Check occasionally to make sure the apple is not sticking. Set aside to cool.
- Add the apples, eggs, egg yolks and sugar in a saucepan and whisk until smooth before adding the butter.Place over a medium low heat and whisk until thickened, approximately 5 to 10 minutes. The mixture will be ready when you can see a slight trail from the whisk remain in the mixture. It will thicken further when refrigerated. Push the curd through a fine mesh sieve (this will help ensure the curd is as smooth as possible) into a jar or sealed container and refrigerate overnight.
- For the scones preheat the oven to 220 degrees celsius (430 Fahrenheit) or 200 celsius if using a fan forced oven. Combine the flour, caster sugar and salt in the bowl and stir to combine. Make a well in the center and add the egg, cream and milk and mix with a wood spoon until the mixture just comes together.
- Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured bench (I like to put cling film over the bench and dust with flour as it makes cleaning up easier) and gently knead until the dough is smooth. Pat out into a circle approximately 2.5cm high and use a small circle scone cutter (approximately 5cm in diameter) to press out the scones. Place in a baking tray with the scones just touching and lightly brush with additional milk before baking for 15 minutes or until golden.
- Serve warm with the apple curd and whipped cream if you like.