Every season, Cuisine Unlimited's chefs seek menu inspiration from upcoming holidays, seasonal products and the desires of customers. This April, they have been truly inspired by none other than the “Incredible, Edible Egg.” How do you make this culinary staple something new and exciting? The chefs have decided to de-construct and re-construct the components of the egg into a mouth-watering dessert.
¼ c. Granulated sugar
3 ea. Whole lemons
3 Tbs. Unsalted butter
4 oz. Lemon juice
½ c. Granulated Sugar
12 ea. Large eggs, grade AA
“De-Constructing” the Egg:
Using an eggshell cutter, cut the tops off each egg one third of the way down the egg. Carefully separate the yolks and whites of the egg into separate bowls.
Rinse eggshells & carefully place in large pot. Cover eggshells with cold water. Put on medium heat & stand by to watch temperature rise. Do not exceed 150 degrees. This is the point right before bubbles begin to form. Hold eggs in water for 3-5 minutes. Carefully remove from water and place upside down on dry paper towels until completely dry.
Using a peeler, remove zest of 3 lemons, being careful to avoid the white pith. Put zest in a food processor fitted with steel blade. Add sugar and pulse until the zest is finely minced into the sugar.
In separate mixing bowl, cream butter and beat in the sugar & lemon mixture. Add eggs yolks, 1 at a time; then add lemon juice and salt. Mix until combined.
Pour the mixture into a 2 quart saucepan and cook over low heat until thickened (about 10 minutes), stirring constantly. The lemon curd will thicken at 170 degrees or just below simmer. Remove from the heat and cover with saran wrap directly on lemon curd. Refrigerate until completely chilled.
Beat egg whites until frothy; gradually add ½ cup sugar, continuing to beat until stiff peaks form.
“Re-Constructing” the Egg:
Use egg carton to stand clean eggshells upright. Spoon or pipe ¼ cup of lemon curd into clean eggshell, then pipe dollop of meringue on top of lemon curd. Using a butane torch; brown top of meringue or place in a 500 degree oven for 3–5 minutes until meringue tops are golden brown. Display in egg-holder or in a rectangular dish filled with sugar.
Try this simple but stunning dessert at home for your Easter brunch. Some may call it “egg-ceptional!”
Emily Lavin is Cuisine Unlimited Catering & Special Events' marketing director and a contributor to utahstyleanddesign.com.
All photos by Dave Hyams