Friday, 8 April 2011

Where Duncan Buys a New Camera, and Makes Some Lemon Curd

I bought a new camera on Saturday, a Digital SLR camera (a Canon EOS 500D) with which I hope to take many an artsy shot (especially of food). I have fancy wavy mirrors in my flat, and took a picture of myself, only slightly fearing that the camera would shatter upon attempting such a feat.
Yes Dad, I know my horizon is crooked
 I have been carrying it around in a cloth bag within my backpack, and every time I wish to take a picture I must hastily extricate it from the various zips and straps. About half of all attempts at shooting so far have been delayed by my inability to learn that taking the lens cap off, while a good start, does not automatically turn the camera on! I've had great fun playing with the various settings, and look forward to deleting many slight variations of shots I have because I've accidentally left 'continuous shooting' on.
Flowery Anthony Gormley
 When trying to take a closeup of the flower below, the normal 'White Balance' settings washed out the red, and it was only in 'tungsten' that it captured the colours somewhat correctly. The background is more bluish than reality had it, but that's generally what tungsten does.

 I made lemon curd! I used the recipe that I normally use, except that when attempting to double it (I had about 15 lemons) I only doubled the lemons and eggs, and neglected to do the same for the butter and sugar. Surprisingly, though, the curd still set, and I was rewarded with quite a tart, but still sweet, delightful lemony curd. I have to say, I did eat some with a spoon, as Joy suggests partway down her Tangerine Lemon Curd page - please note the photos, which are fantastic (even though she probably uses a macro lense!). I still have some lemons left, so I'll make the normal quantity (i.e. with correct proportions of everything) and compare the result with my current batch.
That be an odd-looking chutney, that be!

Lemon Curd 
(from the Sainsbury's Pressure Cooker book)
4 eggs
3 lemons
500g sugar
125g butter

Grating the rind off the lemons is probably easier before you mangle them.
Do so, and then get all the juice out of the lemons (jumping up and down on them: not recommended).
Whisk the eggs with the lemon juice and then strain through a sieve. Ours has a large hole in the middle. No-one wants to sell me a new one.
Melt the butter, sugar and zest in a pan, then add the egg and lemon juice mixture, combine over a medium heat. Keep heating, stirring regularly, until the mixture sets; you'll know when the stuff coats the back of the spoon you're stirring with.
Store in sterilised jars: boil them, or cook them at 100 degrees C, for five minutes, then fill jars and screw on lid tightly. Keep in the fridge.
Eat with the aforementioned spoon, or on toast (sorry, that's Tesco Value bread above) or in yoghurt, and definitely make sure to lick the bowl.

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