Sunday, April 28, 2013

Lemon Meringue Fool

I made a really delicious Lemon Dream Cake for my Mom's birthday a few weeks ago.  In fact, if lemon is your thing and you like super easy cake recipes, I would highly recommend it. This particular lemon cake called for lemon pie filling, but I was unable to find any so I substituted lemon curd instead.  After making the cake I had a good amount of lemon curd leftover and I had no idea what to do with it. Well, actually that's a little bit of a lie.  Eating the remaining lemon curd by the spoonful crossed my mind several times, but it hardly felt like justice for something so delicious.  So I kept hunting for recipes.  Then I remembered this recipe from Nigella.

When I daydream about desserts I tend to think of cakes, pies, cookies, and brownies.  This is a shame in many ways, but mostly because I always forget how much I love a light, creamy, fruity dessert like this fool.  A fool is also a cinch to make and goes together so quickly.  A little lemon curd mixed with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice then folded into some whipped heavy cream and you're pretty much all set.  Crumble some store-bought cookies into the mix, if you'd like, or eat it as is.  It's a very pretty dessert and can be very elegant if served in a martini or parfait glass. Everyone in my house really enjoyed this one. 

Lemon Meringue Fool
Adapted from Nigella Kitchen
by Nigella Lawson
Serves 2 or 4

2/3 cup good-qualit store-bought lemon curd, plus a little extra to decorate
1-2 teaspoons lemon juice, or limoncello if you have it
1 cup heavy cream
4 small meringue cookies (store-bought is fine)*
lemon zest, to serve

*Note: I couldn't find meringue cookies so I used shortbread cookies instead.

Grate the zest of one lemon, reserving the zest for the garnish.  With the remaining lemon, squeeze one to two teaspoons of lemon juice into a medium-sized bowl.  Add the lemon curd to the lemon juice and stir.  If this mixture feels too thick add a little more lemon juice.  

Pour the heavy cream into another bowl and whisk until just thick.  It should hold to its shape, but not be so thickly whipped that it looks dry; it will thicken more as you fold in the lemon curd.

Drizzle half the lemon curd mixture over the cream and fold in with a rubber spatula, then do the same with the remaining half.  You don't want it all folded in completely, whipped cream rippled with lemon is what you're looking for.

If you have the meringue cookies, go ahead and crumble them with your fingers into the fool, and gently fold most of this into the mix.  Spoon it into 4 small martini glasses (or fill 2 large goblets) and decorate with some lemon zest curls and a drizzle of lemon curd, scraped out of the bottom of the bowl it was mixed in, or spooned out of the jar.  If you have any thin, crisp cookies put them on the table for serving. 

Potluck Week at IHCC (Sharing the recipes of Nigella Lawson, Mark Bittman, Giada De Laurentiis, Jamie Oliver, Tessa Kiros, Rick Bayless, and Yotam Ottolenghi)

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