Lemon Olive Oil Custard

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A couple of years ago, we finally got rid of our rickety old blender, the one I had had since my early days in New York, when I threw big parties in my 400 sq ft studio apartment, telling friends and acquaintances to bring their own friends (“especially if they are cute, wink, wink”) and ending up with 100 people squeezed in that tiny space, my bed disassembled and the mattress leaning on the wall on its side to make room, and the white kitchen tile floor turning sticky and charcoal grey from spilled drinks stepped over many times by city worn shoes.

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What was I talking about? Oh yeah, the blender. Many a frozen drink were prepared in that little blender. Did we care that the drinks were always too icy instead of smooth, with the all too frequent stubborn chunks of frozen fruit chocking our straws? No, we didn’t care. We were too drunk, too young, too happy to care.

But the time came to give up youthful blenders and chunky cocktails. So we splurged and bought a Vitamix blender. We never looked back (like with so many things from our younger days). This thing will blend anything in seconds. Give it a few minutes at full speed and it will actually heat up whatever you’re blending, enough to cook it. Which is convenient, when you’re trying to make a cooked custard in a blender. This recipe is genius (it comes in fact from Genius Recipes at Food52.com). Use good olive oil and substitute regular lemons for Meyer lemons if you can’t find them.

And when you’re done, eat it with a spoon (it’s spreadable, more like a curd) and reminisce about your partying days of yore.

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Lemon Olive Oil Custard – Slightly adapted from Food52.com

Notes: This recipe was tested with a Vitamix Professional Series blender. Set the blender at its top speed and run for a total process time of 5 minutes 45 seconds. Any other blender will most likely not cook the custard and will leave it raw. If you don’t have a high speed blender, simply blend until smooth and frothy in step 2, stream in the olive oil with the motor running, then pour into a double boiler or bowl set over gently simmering water on the stovetop, stirring until it thickens up (it should reach 160 degrees for fully cooked eggs, or hold at 140 degrees for 3 1/2 minutes).

Ingredients:

3 whole eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup Meyer lemon juice (or regular lemon juice)
2 tablespoons Meyer lemon zest (or regular lemon zest)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup very good quality extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

1. Place all ingredients but the olive oil in a high-speed blender (capable of generating frictional heat above 160 F). If you don’t have a high-speed blender, see note above.

2. Turn the blender on to its highest setting and process for 4 minutes.

3. While continuing to run on high speed, pour in the olive oil and blend for an additional 90 to 105 seconds until you can see the custard firming up on the sides.

4. The custard can be refrigerated for up to three days or frozen for longer storage. When defrosted, it will return to the same creamy consistency as when fresh.

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