Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Preserved Lemons

If you are not sure what those are, I do not blame you. I wasn’t so knowledgeable about them a while back, either. Preserving citrus gives you an easy way to add tons of lemon/orange flavor to a dish without using very much. They’re preserved in a salt-brine and after hanging out in a jar for a month, the skins are soft and ready to be minced into your favorite dish. The uses for preserved citrus are endless, you can add them to couscous with roasted vegetables, mince into fresh salsa, chop up with green olives and garlic to garnish fish or chicken, garnish ice cream or … I’m sure you can use your imagination here. Why preserve the citrus, you ask? Preserved citrus is to fresh what smoked meats are to raw meats. Still delicious, but with more depth, more flavor.

I kept mine pretty simple and didn’t add any extra aromatics, but if you choose to, they would add another dimension of yummynessHalf Gallon-sized jar
6 to 8 lemons (Meyer would be great, but I wasn’t able to find any)
2 extra lemons for juice or however many is needed.
Your favorite coarse salt
small chili pepper (optional)
bay leaf (optional)
Wash and scrub Lemons very good I added a little peroxide to my rinse water ( with listera being found in so many places better safe then sorry )
Slice the pointy tips off the lemons. Slice in half from the bottom to top, and then slice each half again, from bottom to top. I don’t cut all the way through.

Pack each lemon full of salt and put some on the outside Press into jar and give another good sprinkle of salt. Repeat until your jar is packed firmly with lemons. Use the remaining lemon’s juice to squeeze into the jar. Press them in there really good.
squeeze into the jar. Press them in there really good.
Cover the jar with a tight lid and let the Lemons and the salt sit for several days. .
The Lemons will be ready to open and use in a few weeks. The Lemons should keep for up to a year. They do not require refrigeration, but most people opt to keep them in a refrigerator
When ready to use, they should be rinsed off well and the meat of the lemon should be removed. You only need a little rind, minced well, to pack a whole lotta citrus flavor into dishes.
You can do the same thing with oranges

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