Cranberry Curd, lots and lots of other variations, including savoury ones

Jan 4, 2015 | 3 comments


I made this today. Had a pack of cranberries in the fridge and I love a good curd, so decided to make a cranberry curd with them. I looked at various recipes on the net. Many used cranberry juice, many used lots of ingredients. So in the end I opted for a Delia Smith Lemon Curd recipe and adapted it for the cranberries. It just has eggs, butter, sugar and fruit in it, with a touch of cornflour. No long list of things to find, no complicated method, perfect The recipe is from Delia’s Cookery Course and Illustrated Cookery Course 


Cranberry Curd

4 eggs, mixed weight, 15 eggs/£1, 27p 250g fresh cranberries £2 250g butter 98p 350g sugar, about 80p/kg, 28p 1 tblsp cornflour, 1p? Total cost £3.54, made 3 jam jars (plus a tiny bit), so £1.18 each


Put the cranberries in a pan and add a splash of water. Simmer gently until the fruit has burst and is pulp, you may need to add more water, it seems to thicken up as it goes along. You are aiming for a thick pulp. When the fruit is ready, push it through a sieve, keep pushing until you have just skin and pips left, being sure to get all the bright red pulp from the bottom of the sieve. Now wait impatiently until the pulp is cool. If you add the eggs to it now, the eggs will scramble which will be vile. When the pulp is cool put everything in a saucepan and simmer very gently until the curd coats the back of a spoon. Keep whisking it every minute or so, and don’t let it get too hot. Mine took quite a while to cook, but I did have it on a very low heat, I didn’t want it to curdle or anything. While the curd is cooking, put some clean jam jars and lids in a cool oven for a few minutes to sterilise, leave them there until you are ready to use them. Once the curd is done,  take the jars from the oven and pour the hot curd into them, filling them right to the top. Cover with waxed discs and seal. Keep the curd in the fridge, or other cool place, and use within a few weeks or so. I shall use this on toast for breakfast or with Greek yogurt. It can be used with scones, on biscuits, as a cake filling, with ice cream or even straight from the jar from a spoon, it’s very yummy

You can substitute many fruit pulps for the cranberries. Blackcurrant, redcurrant, blueberry, gooseberry, rhubarb, lemon of course, lime, orange, mandarin or grapefruit. Then there is raspberry, passion fruit,,peach, coconut, kiwi and lime. I would try plum, but it may turn out runnier as the cooked fruit is not so much a pulp, more juicy. Damson would be divine. Any fruit that you like and will make a pulp can be used.  here is a post for a classic apple curd. I have this for breakfast with a sharp apple, sliced, and a sprinkle of cinnamon – delicious!

And how about savoury curds?

I bet a tomato one would work, maybe with some fresh basil, or how about those cheap cans of black olives I got from Approved Food, bet that would be good, sort of like a creamier version of a tapenade. Or beetroot and rosemary. Celeriac or fennel. Caramelised onions are sweet, wonder if there is a version using those, savoury or sweet? There are very few savoury curds on the web. I found a savoury lemon one that uses boiled whole lemons, puréed with a little salt and butter. And that was about it really. The miso mayonnaise in that link sounds amazing too, just mix 30g miso and 200g mayo together I’m going to try a couple and see what I can do with them. I shall start with no sugar, and add it gradually until it tastes right. The butter and eggs are what set a curd, so the texture should be right. Hmmm, what about that miso, miso curd?



  1. Caterina

    Hi Lesley, that’s a lot of things I haven’t thought about! How many carbs, hmmmm not many, mainly I don’t want to rely on starchy carbs, like bread, potatoes, grains, rice etc, but ok with all vegetable carbs. Rose Elliott in her vegetarian low carb diet suggests 20 to 30 grams carb a day but I really don’t want to be fixated with counting and I know I lose on more than that.
    The price of veg in my local market varies, but a bag full of kale, 2 or 3 large heads, costs around £1. They have lots of £1 bowls, I could easily spend £10 max. in veg for the week and it would amply do for my family of 3 adults for more than a week. My shopping would be something like (bowls of) cabbage, cauliflower, onions, lettuce, spinach, courgettes, tomatoes, peppers, fennels, but with variations on this. For example sometimes I buy pak choi or Chinese leaf, or buy watercress, or when I am in lid! I get avocados as they are cheaper. The market ones rot within minutes!
    A bag of 2 Kg pulses from Mr T. costs £3 and lasts for a long time, and so does polenta (a rare carby treat) and a large bag 1.5kg chick pea flour, when on offer, costs around £1, but more often up to £1.50 and also lasts ages. I have a stock of quinoa and millet (better “grains” for when I am not too strict) which I buy from h&b when they have the buy one get one half price sale, and I also treat myself to occasional porridge oats, basic, super cheap from any of the SMs. I try to avoid fruit because it is too sugary, but have it very occasionally. I make my own yogurt but use organic milk, 1lt yogurt costs me around £1, but it could be much cheaper if no organic milk is used and milk bought in bulk, which I don’t because I use nuts to make my own milk, (other than for yogurt) or buy soya at £0.65 per carton. I spend quite a bit on nuts because they are great protein and a little goes a long way. Average cost of almonds is around £8 per kg, and a bit more for brazils, hazelnuts and walnuts at the discount supermarkets. I aim to never buy cheese at more than £5/kg but sometimes if I get fancy extra mature I spend a bit more.
    Let me explain, personally I am not tied to the £1 per person per day, as thankfully DH is in gainful employment, but I like to be frugal as we are approaching retirement in a year or two and need to save like mad. But I am not in a desperate situation is what I mean. I think a veg low carb plan could just about be done on £1 per day if you use pulses and occasional tofu, but you would struggle to do it if you factor in nuts. Seeds are cheaper esp. if bought in bulk.
    Finally, I think that if I could stick to 1700 calls a day I also would lose weight, slowly but safely.
    I look forward to reading your ideas! Thank you.

  2. Lesley

    Wow, now that’s a challenge! I use supermarkets to price as I try to make the plans usable over as wide an area as possible. So using markets for a plan wouldn’t really work. When I spoke of carrots and kale I was being a bit facetious 🙂 Had a look at kale in the supermarkets and it was about £5 a kilo

    What I could do though is all the parts of a plan before the detailed recipes for you. So I could price it up, run it through the nutritional spreadsheet and construct a suggested meal plan.

    Could you let me know a few things. The price of the veg that you buy at the market, and what veg you like to eat. When you say low carb, there are many variations of that, with people having varying amounts of carbs per day. Do you know how many you are aiming at, or is it a general low carb thing.

    Finally, do you have any kind of calorie target you aim at. I, for instance, need to have 1700 cals pd to lose weight, and aim to up my protein so I’m not constantly starving.

    I was vegetarian for many years, so have many favourite veggie recipes, many of which I have posted. Veggie proteins do tend to have carbs attached. I would head in the direction of lentils, peas and beans for instance, all of which have a carb load.

    If I was thinking of slimming on a veg diet, I would have things like lentil shepherds pie, lots of differently flavoured dahls, veg and pulse sambar, spinach dumplings (chickpea flour), veg casserole and dumplings, hoummous, veg crumble

    These would all be sustaining, and slimming at the right cals pd, although not especially low carb. If I did a meal plan with that kind of thing, would it be too high carb for you? Couldn’t get all that variety in one week of course, couldn’t buy all those different ingredients at the budget level!

    I’m up for the challenge, but it may well take a DM or two to get my head round what is needed

  3. Caterina

    Happy New Year, Lesley!

    I read your post of a couple of days ago where you are thinking of a plan based on carrots and kale for weight loss. I just wondered whether you would consider thinking up one of your wonderful plans, for weight loss, that is suitable for a low carb vegetarian. I know it is a tall order to ask you make it work for £1 per day, but I thought something based on greens, eggs, tofu, would it be feasible do you think? I would probably spend a bit more than £1 per day because I buy non-battery eggs (but no longer the organic ones, far too expensive). Kale and other veg are very cheap at the market do the veg part of it would be easy on the budget! I look forward to hearing your opinion on this, as I need to avoid bread and pasta and most starchy carbs in order to be able to lose weight without starving! Thank you.

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