Join Janet on her adventures as a designer, writer, maker, and farmer in montana. no two days are ever the same. you might even see a bear or two.

Lovely Lemon Curd

Lovely Lemon Curd

The sample test from the company I had applied to was the first item on my to-do list yesterday morning. I finished it, submitted it, and now just have to wait to hear from them. In the meantime, I’ll keep other parts of the job search moving forward.

And then I made lemon curd!


As I assembled all of the supplies, I realized that I do not have a double boiler. My first thought was, “How could I not have a double boiler in this well-stocked kitchen?” My second thought was, “Well, you don’t bake, and that’s where a double boiler gets used most often, so no surprise there.” I managed to rig one up by putting the metal mixing bowl from my Kitchen Aid mixer over a pan of water on the stove. It worked, although I probably ought to get a proper one.

I also don’t have a lemon zester. I ended up peeling the rinds with a regular vegetable peeler, which was adequate. I just needed to peel carefully so as not to pull up the white part. The rinds came off in large chunks, which I chopped finely.

It took longer than expected for the curd to thicken; the recipe said 6 to 9 minutes, but I cooked it—stirring constantly—for about 15 minutes. When it was obvious that it wasn’t going to thicken any further, I strained it, put it into the jars, and processed it in the water bath canner. I used the juice from all the lemons, which was a bit more than the one cup of juice called for in the recipe. That, combined with the fact that I didn’t have a proper double boiler, may have been the reason the curd didn’t thicken as much as it should have.

It was still yummy. One of these jars will go back to Cathy and the others will be given to special people. Despite being water bath processed, this won’t last more than about 3-4 months and needs to be used up soon.

The book Food in Jars also has a recipe for lime curd. That one sounds like a lot of fun.

It is so rare that I work from actual recipes. I made taco soup for dinner last night, which consisted of a pound of our pork chorizo sausage, a pound of ground beef, some onions and garlic and peppers from the fridge, most of a leftover container of vegetable broth, canned kidney beans, corn from the freezer, and two cans of Ro-Tel tomatoes. We topped it with cheese, sour cream, and tortilla chips. DD#2 asked me for the recipe in case she wanted to make some for herself. I told her there wasn’t really a recipe. The husband wolfed down two bowls of it when he got home and asked, “Where did you get this recipe?” and I said, “From inside my head.”

I know it is frustrating to my kids, who would like to have some of their favorites written down (I do try), but that’s how I cook. I use recipes as inspiration, not as road maps.


DD#2 is heading back to school soon. I don’t get as much done when my kids are home just because they are fun to spend time with. I’d rather do stuff with them. After she leaves, though, I need to get back to some of the projects I started last fall. I’m still making Ritzville quilt blocks here and there, but I need to do something else—something a bit more challenging. And I still need a good winter purse to carry around.

[I stumbled across the 2019 Block of the Month project the other day and lo and behold!—it’s blocks made up of half-square triangles! I bookmarked this one for more ideas on using up all those blue and white HSTs.]

I didn’t sign up for this year’s Bag of the Month Club. The Club really seems to be geared more toward bag makers who make custom purses and I am just not a fancy purse person. The only bag I made from last year’s Club was the Ravenwood Messenger Bag. That was a challenging project and one I enjoyed very much. I have plenty of waxed canvas and could always make another one.

Over and Back to Spokane

Over and Back to Spokane

Faster Than Expected

Faster Than Expected