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preserved lemons  RSS feed

 
tel jetson
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anybody else made preserved lemons?  I started a jar before I moved in June and just now found it again.  delicious.

pretty simple: lemons and salt and time.
 
                          
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Tel, did you leave your lemons whole or quartered? And did you cover them with water after salting? I have wanted to find ways to preserve lemons, even wanting to make limoncello, so that I have more lemon around. I use a lot of lemons in my recipes.
 
Leila Rich
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I quarter the lemons but leave the base intact, stuff with rock salt, add a few cloves and a couple of bay leaves, top up with good water and ignore them for a couple of months.
I like the salty lemon juice as much as the lemons.  I tend to be pretty 'exuberant' with seasonings, and experience has taught me that it's really easy to add too much and render your dressing/risotto/fish/whatever inedibly salty.
 
tel jetson
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I slice four thin wedges out of each lemon, then stuff the cavities with salt.  pack the lemons and wedges I slice out into a jar, add a little bit more salt, then top it up with more lemon juice instead of water.
 
                                  
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I did the same thing with seville (bitter) oranges last year - I think they're pretty good. Give rice/cous cous dishes a Moorish flavour
 
Robert Ray
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My first attempt was way too salty but tearing a wedge off and giving it a rinse made them great. I use them in Greek salads. I tone the salt down a bit now.
Lemoncello made at the same time with a combination of meyer lemons and regular doesn't seem to last as long.
 
tel jetson
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I just finished off the first batch with some fish on the grill to celebrate some unseasonal sunny weather.  time to start another jar.

a batch of limoncello sounds like a pretty solid plan, too.
 
Robert Ray
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I use them when making guacamole too.
 
Chris Fitt
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tel jetson wrote:
pretty simple: lemons and salt and time.


I was just talking about doing this again, its been a few years.  How long do you let yours sit?
 
tel jetson
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misfit wrote:
I was just talking about doing this again, its been a few years.  How long do you let yours sit?


at least three weeks.  I forgot about the last batch and it probably sat for two months and turned out just fine.
 
Chris Fitt
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Good to know.  I made them once and needed them fast and only gave them two weeks.  They seemed OK.  It seemed to me the type of thing that would be better the longer i let it go.  Were the two month ones better in flavor? 
 
tel jetson
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flavor didn't change a whole lot, but I would say the older lemons were better.  the rinds were certainly softer.
 
Robert Ray
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I agree softer rind but no noticeable change in flavor.
 
Jack Shawburn
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How much salt in your recipes please.?
 
tel jetson
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Jen0454 wrote:
How much salt in your recipes please.?


I don't really measure.  maybe a tablespoon on the bottom of the jar, then I fill up the slices with salt.  maybe a little more than two tablespoons total for three lemons.  I think there's plenty of wiggle room, though.
 
Leila Rich
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I made a giant batch a year ago and I'm just about finished, which is a bit unfortunate as it's not lemon season and in winter the local trees are covered!
I'll try to manage it so that I'm always making more in-season.
Btw, I do the cut-into-quarters-but-still-attached method (if you know what I mean) and just use the zest when I cook.
I imagine the lemons will last pretty indefinately and they are much improved with age, so make loads!
I decant some into small jars when they're 'done' for gifts.
 
Leila Rich
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I'm also working my way through a giant jar of preserved limes, bought when they were really cheap.
I keep topping up the jars with water as I use the salty ctrus 'jelly' from around the fruit.
 
Tom Davis
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I just got some og Meyer lemons to try this, will be saving the seed to try some cold climate experiments!
Excited
 
Rufus Laggren
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My Middle Eastern B-in-law uses dried lemons in his recipes. Kinda like lemon mummies. Just leaves them in an oven w/a pilot light, or even just sitting on a high warm shelf for a few months.... He never cuts them open and I don't _think_ he squeezes them first before drying. Anyway they keep showing up and going into stews (whole) and definitely add a taste I've found nowhere else. My sister keeps them in a 1 gal mason jar once they've achieved the after-world and they seem to keep forever (as stuff should, once it reaches the after-world! <g>.

Rufus
 
Tom Davis
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Anyone have tips for how to store the lemons whole?
I want to keep the seeds viable for as long as I can. Apparently, the seed don't keep long.
I read put wax on the skin, store in fridge, store in sand.
 
Leila Rich
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Rufus, I've long been fascinated by dried limes; I've never seen dried lemons.
Time to utilise that high shelf...
Tom, from what I know lemons don't ripen after picking: you need to start with ripe fruit.
The seed must stay moist, ie in the fruit until planted.
I'd leave my lemon on its own, so it doesn't mould.
A lemon with a dried-out skin should sit for ages.
 
Rufus Laggren
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Well, according to the experts in my family the best place to dry stuff (like lemons) is the standard American frost-free refrigerator... Who've thought. My sister puts them on the back shelf and when they reach the hard brown stage (3-4 weeks but I suspect it depends on the refrig) puts them in the jar. She says the oven pilot light usually works fine too but she's had trouble w/mold in the oven. And as a side note, apparently they keep getting smaller as they age

I'll mention limes as an alternative taste treat. <g>

Rufus.
 
Julie Anderson
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As the latest project in my "Fun with Fermentation" series, I have my first batch of these going. They'll be "finished" in about 10 days. The recipe I'm using says to remove the pulp at that time and keep only the peel and juice. I couldn't tell from reading the posts if that was the general method. Please comment.

Julie
 
tel jetson
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I don't remove the pulp. that seems silly to me. the whole fruit ends up delicious.

if you've got an immediate use for the pulp, though, I don't see a problem with removing it. certainly not necessary, though.
 
Robert Ray
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I don't remove the pulp either. I've use them when making guacamole and diced small in salads.
 
Branden Byers
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I never use to remove the pulp with my preserved lemons, but now that I do, I find that it adds a smoother flavor to the finished dish. The flesh has a slightly harsher flavor that works better in soups and stocks in my opinion.
 
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