Lemon curd is a traditional spread and cake or tartlet filling. But in her new cookbook, "From My Chateau Kitchen (Clarkson Potter, $45)," Anne Willan gives an alternative version of the recipe that uses raspberries.

"The color is purplish, rather strange unless you add a bit of food coloring, but the flavor is spectacular," she writes.Both raspberry and lemon curd are easy to make, and the spreads have many uses. Willan provides the recipe as a filling for a wedding layer cake; she recommends using any leftover as a delicious spread for toast. Curd may also be used as a topping for servings of vanilla ice cream, or on warm scones or crisp ginger cookies.


1 pint container raspberries, about 2 cups (see note for lemon)

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

4 eggs, lightly beaten

Puree the raspberries in a food processor and put them in a pan with the butter and sugar. Heat gently, stirring constantly, until the ingredients are melted and combined. Let them cool to tepid, then stir in the eggs.

Set the pan back on the heat and continue to cook over very low heat, stirring all the time, until the curd thickens enough to coat the back of the spoon, 20 to 25 minutes. Don't let the curd cook too fast or get too hot as it will curdle.

Work the curd through a sieve to remove the seeds (or zest from lemons, if used). Makes 2 cups of curd.

Note: for the lemon curd, replace the raspberry puree with the grated zest and juice of 4 large lemons and cook the curd less -- 10 minutes is probably enough.