feast magazine, january 2014: passion fruit + raspberry curd.

feast magazine january 2014: passion fruit-raspberry curd.

Can we pretend like it’s January yet? Because I’m ready for the new year. I feel like collectively we may be a little worn out from the December holidays (and I’m throwing Thanksgiving in there also, because it was basically in December this year also) and are anxious for the new year to begin. I’ve already made (some of) my new years resolutions – some for myself, some for this space here – and am ready to set those plans in motion. Yesterday, I managed to move an entire room of furniture and exorcise all the clutter demons which existed in the space, and I feel so good inside because of it. Granted, some of that clutter now exists in other rooms, but I’m getting there. Baby steps.

feast magazine january 2014: passion fruit-raspberry curd.

Feast must have been anxious for the new year to start also, because the January issue is already out – hooray! In the spirit of freshness, my column this month is about passion fruit: probably the freshest, most exotic way to begin anew that I can think of. It’s everything that the winter holidays are not: light, bright, and tropical, and eating it now is like sitting on a sun-swathed beach while your home town is blanketed in snow. You can’t always find it in grocery stores, but it’s worth the hunt. You know how we’re all going to go crazy in a few weeks over blood oranges and Meyer lemons like we’re explorers who just discovered the New World? Passion fruit deserves to get included in those annual obsessions, too.

feast magazine january 2014: passion fruit-raspberry curd.

Passion fruits are luxurious right out of the gate: there’s nothing at all wrong with devouring it from its protective outer skin. The problem? Passion fruits can be pricey (just like those marrons glace from last month), so it’s nice when you can stretch that dreamy flavor out somehow. Thankfully, passion fruits are tiny flavor powerhouses, so a little goes a long way. This month, I paired them with raspberries inside a curd: it’s the perfect way to enjoy these fruits, because they remain the floraly star of the show against the background of tart raspberry. Their colors blend into a lovely magenta, and the texture is superb: I leave the passion fruit seeds in for a fun little crunch and speckle to the finished product.

Use this any way you please: it’s terrific spooned into these almond thumbprint cookies (the almond flour really works well with the passion fruit-raspberry combo here) or served alongside an angel food cake. It’s incredible also over meringue nests or a big fat pavlova (or smaller individual pavlovas) atop a cloud of whipped cream. No matter which way you choose to enjoy it, just know that you will enjoy it: even if it’s just you, a jar of this, and a spoon. No judgement; I did it too.

feast magazine january 2014: passion fruit-raspberry curd.

For more about what passion fruits are and what you can use them in, head over here to my little article about them on the Feast Magazine site. If you’re local, run (run, I say!) to the nearest place which carries it and grab a copy for yourself. If you’re lucky enough to be blessed with passion fruits in your local market, gather them up and bring them home to make this curd: you’ll find the recipe right here.

I’ll be back with the third installment of the Just One Question Project in a few days: if you still want to share your thoughts on the question and haven’t yet, please feel free to send your answer my way. I’m going to spend the last breath of December 2013 writing, catching up on my blog reading, and planning for the new year. I’m going to make food again, I promise. IT WILL HAPPEN.

In the meantime, head over here for the Passion Fruit-Raspberry Curd recipe.

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34 Comments on "feast magazine, january 2014: passion fruit + raspberry curd."

  1. Dana Staves says:

    That curd looks delicious, and yes, definitely a needed flavor burst after the rich holidays. I too am ready for it to be January, and am making resolutions, redecorating my office (or decorating it for the first time since I never actually did that when we moved in), and preparing to cook more, write more, etc. Can’t wait to see what comes of your blog in 2014!

  2. Faygie says:

    I’ve never had passion fruit, but it’s something I’ve wanted to try since I first got Milk Bar. This looks like such a great way to use it, and the color of this curd is so pretty!

    • shannon says:

      thank you! and never? oh no, we have to fix that. besides, how are we ever going to make the chocolate chip passion fruit momofuku cake someday without the passion fruit bit of that? It’s really good: i have still never tried it with chocolate myself, and in my head, i can’t see how it pairs in the way that the book says it does, but i’m going to experiment. I wonder if you’d have better access to them where you are, since it’s one of the only places where they’re grown domestically.

  3. I have the new edition of Feast but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. So I haven’t seen your article. I love passion fruit! But you’re right that they’re pricey! And of not in good supply, alas. I’ve had luck finding frozen passion fruit sometimes at the local Asian or Hispanic grocery stores. It’s a lot cheaper! And some of the local wine stores are now stocking good quality passion fruit syrup (which used to be impossible to find locally – I used to buy it mail order from Hawaii!). So things are looking up! Fun post – thanks.

    • shannon says:

      John, since i’m answering this remarkably late, hopefully you’ve had a chance to flip through the issue. i loved this one, and i thought it had some really great topics this month (plus, the Tastemakers feature, CRAZY awesome). Good to know that about the passion fruits: i’ll remember that for when i can’t find them at Dierbergs or Schnucks (or maybe i’ll go there first if they’re so much cheaper – my shopping for this article was costly, yes). I’m so interested about the stocking of passion fruit syrup! I’ve looked into purchasing passion fruit puree online (from hawaii, as you mentioned), and although the puree wasn’t terribly expensive to get, the shipping cost was astronomical, so i cancelled the order. I’d love to mess with that at some point, definitely.

  4. LOVE THIS RECIPE! I actually have inherited a passionfruit plant from my mom, if it lasts the winter I’ll have to harvest some fruit to make this curd with! Looks so tasty! And Aaron would DIE over almond thumbprint cookies (almond anything, really. one of his christmas “gifts” was actually just a thing of marzipan. true story).

    I’VE MISSED YOU SO MUCH! Can’t wait for the next post!

    • shannon says:

      seriously, do you live in HEAVEN with your inherited passion fruit plant, your olive trees, and your bountiful yard lemons. it’s like the only thing that makes me move to the southwest: awesome produce in my front yard, just because.

      make the almond cookies! They’re super easy, although they’re also super easy to eat which means double batch. they’re healthy? egg whites.

      that you gave Aaron marzipan for christmas is amazing. The couple which gifts each other with random ingredients, STAYS TOGETHER.

      *happy tears*

  5. Kathy G says:

    I picked up a copy of the magazine yesterday, and read it today. I’ve never worked with passion fruit before; I’ll be keeping my eyes open for it at the grocery store.

    • shannon says:

      This month’s magazine was really interesting, i thought: i loved the Tastemakers feature, and i actually have in my fridge all the ingredients to make Lucy’s root vegetable souffle (in the Meal Options section). I wish i had thought of that. :) Hopefully they stock some coming up here in our stores: i’ll let you know if i see any and where.

  6. Deb says:

    I am also ready for the New Year! I adore the season of citrus and look forward to the glut of yellow and orange brightness during the winter. Passion fruit is elusive but worth searching for especially with such a creative recipe for curd to try!

    • shannon says:

      I always feel like all that beautiful citrus is nature’s way of cheering us up after the holidays are over, you know? We need freshness and light and beauty after all that heavy eating. Definitely worth it, even just for eating: passion fruit is one of those things which needs to be experienced.

  7. elizabeth says:

    I *literally* just watched an older Good Eats episode in which AB makes a lemon curd, and I was thinking to myself how nice it would be to try my hand at it. Now I’m basically going to have to, because I want to have all of this gorgeous passion fruit/raspberry curd in my life.

    Happy New Year! Looking forward to seeing the results of Just One Question #3.

    • shannon says:

      Elizabeth, i swear to you it’s easy: I compared it to risotto in another comment, and to me it’s very similar. One, relaxed stirring. Two, once you know how to do one, you can do them all, which is always nice when you feel like you’ve mastered not one thing, but the entire genre.

      happy new year to you as well! Hope you like Just One Question #3: i was so proud of myself for posting it last night because it marks my return to actual full thoughts, and yay for that post-holiday normalcy.

  8. Oooh, yum. I love fruit curds, but am not all that familiar with passionfruit. Now I’m on a mission — next time I go shopping, I am so buying one!

    Also, you are so right about this new year thing… I’m done with 2013. I’m done with holidays. They were too close together this year, and all I want to do is set my sights ahead and move forward. It was fun while it lasted, but 2014, here I come! :)

    • shannon says:

      The one thing that’s hard with my column for the magazine is that i obviously center it around fresh produce or other ingredients which almost always either have short seasons or are otherwise difficult to find. Passion fruits are one that you should see in small amounts during their season, in some stores. Not always, but we usually do here. Makes you appreciate that not all ingredients are bountiful in all places: i guess in recent history we’ve gotten used to it, but we forget that even a few generations ago, EVERYTHING would have been a “mystery ingredient” depending on where you were, regionally speaking. I hope you can find them up there, b/c they really are delightful. If you want to sneak a peek of the flavor, i believe it’s Fage or Chobani who make a passion fruit greek yogurt: it’ll give you an idea of what you’re in for.

      high five for the end of 2013! Mom and i talked about the closeness factor this year several times: no one seemed to be ready for christmas because it’s like we were missing a week to prepare. I’m entirely ready for it to be 2014.

  9. Wendy says:

    Maybe 2014 will be the year I expand my fruit curd horizons! I love lemon curd (as in, eat a jar of it with a spoon, love). Until I started reading food blogs, I didn’t even know curd could be made from other fruits….passion fruit no less! Making it myself never even entered my mind. Now you have given me a craving for passion fruit curd! I WILL be giving this a try as soon as I brave the snow and find a passion fruit! :)

    • shannon says:

      it’s curd year, Wendy! :) what’s nice about them is that it’s always the same basic idea, just switch fruit in and out as you see fit. you can make curd with almost any fruit, you just have to find the balance between the sugar and the pulp/juice/whatever. combos are my favorite, because you can really do some interesting things there. It requires the patience of a risotto, but once you get it, you can do it in your sleep. :)

  10. Ashley says:

    With the snow that just sauntered in and plopped down like it intends to stay, you’re rescuing me from winter despair! Thank you! And I love passion fruit, though I usually need to temper it’s tropical blast-in-your-face with other ingredients to keep my feet firmly in Ohio (sigh).

    And isn’t cleaning/reorganizing/restarting just the most amazing feeling of accomplishment? You’re spot on in that in exorcises the clutter/bad juju demons. Rock it! I can’t wait to see what you’ll do here next….

    • shannon says:

      We are all covered in snow, and it really HAS just plopped down like a boss and made itself at home, has it not? It’s like we live in Wisconsin, minus the 4WD vehicles and snow tires. The passion fruit should definitely help when you close your eyes and wish you were at the beach. By itself, i can see how people would think it *too* tropical, because it really is aggressively so to some palates, but thankfully it does pair well with a good many things which tone it down but let it keep its running-through-the-beach-grass flavor. :)

      simply put, I. Love. Cleaning. Especially deep cleaning: my assignments this weekend on that Apt Therapy January Cure (obviously i’m talking about a post from the future now, i.e. the one i just posted today) was to buy myself flowers and scrub my floors. i wasn’t excited about the latter until i did it, and WHOA: i felt SO good about life. and it was JUST the floors!! Gotta love the reorganizing…now if i can just scrub and reorganize my brain to find space for all the thoughts, you know? I’m working on it, and thank you for having so much faith in me. :)

  11. Organizing always feels so good. I truly believe it’s good for the soul. I like going through the house and getting rid of crap I no longer use. Ha, take that crap! This passion fruit raspberry curd is gorgeous. The color–gorgeous! I want to swirl it in my steel cut oats. Pinned.

    • shannon says:

      It is good for the soul, i agree! It makes me feel more calm and settled…like less clutter somehow equals less distraction and more focus, which makes sense.
      Swirling this curd in oats is a GREAT idea! I like to include examples of how things can be used when i do the feast articles, and i didn’t think of that with this, but it’s definitely a wonderful way to use it.

  12. Passion fruit is not one I’ve spent much time with! I did just find some tiny little guavas and I think the only thing I know to do with them is to make juice. I think guava juice and gin could work very well together, don’t you? Going to read your, what I know will be great, article!

  13. I have so many plans for 2014 that I think the year just imploded on me. It’s so exciting! Also, I’m a total slacker and COMPLETELY FORGOT ABOUT THE JUST ONE QUESTION PROJECT. I’m going to blame the holiday house guests… I’ll add it to the list of things I’ll be more responsible about in 2014.

    • shannon says:

      It’s okay! I blame my own house guests for me falling behind here…JERKS. just kidding, mom. :) Are we going to do all the things this year?!?! I THINK WE ARE.

  14. P.S. I want that curd in my face.

  15. Emma says:

    This reminds me how it’s been forever since I’ve tried out a new flavor of curd. I am hereby proclaiming that my next foray shall be kiwi fruit curd. Maybe.

    Love passion fruit. Now I just need to find some:)

    • shannon says:

      Wait: i just had some sort of flashback to one of you telling me you tried something with kiwi and it was not as expected. it’ll come to me…dang it someone help me out. I can’t remember if it was a curd. I want to know how it goes: i always think of kiwi as being very similar to big, furry grapes b/c they have sort of that same texture and sweetness, so it’ll be interesting to see how that translates into curd. Mostly if it holds up against the eggy. hmmm.

      seek it out! So packed with flavor, those little things. I love them also.

  16. Monica says:

    The color of this curd is simply beautiful! And how good does “almond thumbprint cookies” sound, not to mention with this special filling. I definitely need to branch out beyond lemon curd. Happy New Year! Have a great, happy, fulfilling 2014!

    • shannon says:

      Monica, thank you! and you would love those almond thumbprints: it was so cloudy here for so long that i couldn’t get a good photo of them at the time i was photographing the curd, but if you look at the original post, you’ll find that they’re beautiful; one of my all time favorite cookies to make. Curds are SO much fun to play with: i’ve certainly had a few failures, but when it works, it SO works. I’ll hopefully be doing some interesting ones this year.

      and a very happy new year to you too! I expect good things from you. :)

  17. ok, sorry, finally catching up on your blog! I don’t think that I’ve ever had passion fruit, nor do I know what one looks like (obviously i will go check out your article now!) I could see how this would be absolutely amazing paired with those almond cookies…yum! Loving your Feast articles, Shannon :)

    • shannon says:

      this is a “no apology” zone: i basically disappeared from the planet for three weeks, soooo…you’re good.

      You should totally try them if you can find them! Look for them in what i like to call the “weird produce” section: our stores all have that one place that’s off to the side with little bins of all sorts of things that aren’t “mainstream,” and they’re probably there. Thanks, Amy: i’m loving the challenge of writing the Feast articles.

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