Don’t be fooled by the word “cream.” This delicious recipe for Lemon Cream from Amelia Simmons’ cookbook American Cookery (1796), is ironically completely dairy-free. Instead, it uses an interesting egg-cooking technique which yields a delicious custard-like dessert. While fruit creams of this nature have over time fallen off most modern culinary menus, lemon cream is one of the few survivors. It’s most recognizable today in the form of lemon cream pie.
This is a very easy recipe. Be sure to use only fresh lemon juice!
- 6 egg whites
- 1 whole egg
- the juice of 4 lemons (about 1 cup)
- 1 cup of water
- 2 cups of sugar
- the rind of one lemon
Mix together the egg whites, egg, lemon juice, and water.
Whisk in the sugar until it’s completely dissolved.
Pour the mixture through a sieve to strain off any egg treadles.
Put the whole mixture in a pot with the lemon rind, and place it over medium-low heat.
Stirring constantly, slowly bring the mixture up to a simmer — just under boiling. If any foam or scum forms, remove it.
The mixture will remain very liquid as it heats up. It’s very important that you stir the mixture continuously. Immediately prior to boiling, the mixture will suddenly and noticeably thicken. When this happens, immediately remove it from the heat.
Serve the cream warm or cold “in china dishes”. (Jon serves them in these beautiful bowls.) The cream will continue to set as it cools.
This cream can be served by itself or in other desserts. Jon, Michael, and Ivy brainstorm a few such desserts, like a tart, pie, and doughnuts.
What would you make?
Post your ideas and or pictures below!