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  1. Combine the lemon juice, butter, and sugar in a large saucepan.

  2. Place the saucepan over medium heat on the stove and heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved, 3 to 5 minutes. 

  3. Meanwhile, break the eggs into a medium heat-safe bowl and beat them briefly to mix the yolks and whites together.

  4. Carefully pour about half of the hot liquid into the bowl with the eggs and whisk to incorporate; this will "temper" the eggs so they won't curdle when you combine them with the remainder of the hot liquid.

  5. Pour the contents of the bowl back into the saucepan and return the pan to medium-low heat.

  6. Whisking constantly, cook the curd until it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon or spatula, 5 to 10 minutes. Use a spoon or spatula to scrape the bottom and sides of the pan occasionally to incorporate any stuck-on curd, stirring it back into the main mixture. 

  7. Remove the curd from the heat and pour it into a heat-safe bowl or measuring cup. If you see any small bits of cooked egg, pass the curd through a fine-mesh strainer to remove them. 

  8. Allow the curd to cool for 15 to 20 minutes, then stir briefly and cover the surface with a piece of plastic wrap. 

  9. Cool the curd at room temperature until barely warm then refrigerate until set, about 3 hours.

  10. Storage Instructions: Store curd in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks; freeze for longer storage.

Tips from our Bakers

  • To get the most juice out of your fresh lemons, heat each one for 10 to 15 seconds in the microwave before cutting in half and juicing.

  • Looking for a shortcut version of this recipe? Try our Easy Microwave Lemon Curd, which thickens quickly and doesn't require cooking on the stove.