My Grandma is renown for her excellent cooking skills, and her ability to feed any small army that unexpectedly pops by for supper. She always has food ready to go in case of last-minute invitations and visitors, and one trick up her sleeve is to always have a jar of her fantastic lemon butter in the fridge. This Lemon Butter is perfectly tart, but with enough sugar that it won't cause anyone to pucker. It's thick, and creamy, and an instant fix for any boring dessert. Stir this in with cream cheese for a fruit dip. Fold in Cool Whip for a lemon mousse. Use it as cake filling for an angel food, or serve a dollop on top of a Blueberry Brunch Cake. Or, do as my Grandma does and throw a scoop in a tart shell for super fast mini-pies.
I usually zest just two of the lemons in for the perfect amount of tartness - Grandma does three, my mom does one... It really just depends what your personal tastes are. And if you are using Meyer lemons, use 6 whole lemons instead of the 3 the recipe calls for. And above all, don't be intimidated by the idea of having to use a double boiler - this recipe really is simple.
Grandma's Lemon Butter recipe:
2 cups granulated sugar
3 lemons - juice and zest *see note above
scant 1/4 c of butter
Combine all ingredients in double boiler.
Don't forget the butter (I nearly did this time!)
Bring water in bottom pot to a boil and cook mixture, beating continually. As the mixture cooks, the color will get lighter, and it will eventually begin to thicken. The mixture may boil a bit - this is okay. Once it looks as thick as pudding, remove from heat and transfer into a separate bowl to cool. This will stop the cooking process faster to make sure your egg doesn't decide to do anything funny and clump up on you.
Store in a jar in the fridge for two weeks - if it makes it that long without being eaten up! The Lemon Butter with thicken further as it cools - FYI.
This recipe makes about 3.5 cups of Lemon Butter. But hey, who says it has to be lemon? Try grapefruit, or blood orange! And if you don't have whole lemons, you can use bottled lemon juice and sub in a couple drops of lemon essential oil to replace the zest!
I laugh when I see Lemon Butter for sale in stores - this recipe is so fantastic, and so simple, I've never had a desire to try any other! I hope you agree!
Mrs. VanderLeek ;)
*credit to Grandma Free for this wonderful recipe!