So, in case you didn't know, Easter is one of our most favoritest of holidays.
Admittedly, not for the religious reasons you might think, but because of all the special desserts.
We're sure you are shocked to discover that our holiday preferences are based on dining options, but it's true.
Our very most favoritest would be Christmas because of all the frosted cookies, gingerbread, bouches de noel and Brach's Peppermint Nougat (TRUST us) and then clearly next would be Thanksgiving with apple pies and pumpkin cheesecakes and, um, hi have you ever had anything with cranberries baked into it, delicious, and then prolly we'd have to say Halloween mostly because of all the candy that is repackaged into "snack sizes" so we can pretend we're not eating as much, oh, and duh, CANDY CORN! Hmmm....we suppose Valentine's Day could sneak in there because of all the chocolate and perhaps Fourth of July if only for those sheets cakes that are decorated like flags and various fruit cobblers.
Wait, did we cover Easter? Because Easter would definitely in the most favoritest list largely due to the exclusive candy options available only at Easter (dare we remind you) and those little chocolate-covered Chinese noodle nests with jelly beans in the center and Easter baskets with chocolate bunnies so you can eat the ears off...
Not that we are neglecting Passover though, it's just the tiny fact that we aren't Jewish, but we are pan-religion Holiday lovers. Passover is totally awesome too. Have you had a chocolate-dipped macaroon lately or made matzo toffee recently? Do it.
So where were we? Ah, yes. Easter. One of the best things about Easter specifically is the complete embrace of all things lemon in the dessert choices. It's like all of a sudden Spring and everyone is psyched about only cooking with lemons and we all go lemon crazy.
It's ok though. Lemons are one of our most favoritest fruits to cook with...well, of course, apples and most stone fruits would have to be included in that list and clearly most berries bake up nicely and, in fact, pears are surprisingly subtle additions to sweets...and...
Adapted from Ina Garten
3 extra-large whole eggs
3 extra-large eggs, separated
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4 lemons)
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup good bottled lemon curd, at room temperature
Whipped cream and fresh berries for garnish
In a large heat-proof bowl (we used a glass bowl), whisk together the 3 whole eggs, 3 egg yolks, 1 cup sugar, the lemon zest, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and cook, whisking constantly, for about 10 to 12 minutes until the mixture is thick like pudding. Take off the heat and set aside for 15 minutes to cool. Cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours, until completely chilled.
In a small bowl or cup, mix the measured lemon curd to soften it. Remove custard from fridge and stir in the lemon curd. In a separate bowl, place half the egg whites and a pinch of salt. Whisk with an electric mixer on high speed. After about a minute, add the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and continue to beat until the whites are stiff and shiny. Carefully fold the beaten whites into the cold lemon mixture with a rubber spatula. Place the cream in the same bowl (you can also use a Kitchen Aid mixer fitted with the whisk attachment) and beat with electric mixer on high speed until the cream forms stiff peaks. Carefully fold the whipped cream into the lemon mixture. Pour mousse into large souffle dish or evenly among individual ramekins (6-8 small ones and 4 medium ones). Dollop with fresh whipped cream and your choice of berries. Chill and serve cold.