Everyone in Berkeley seems to find access to a Meyer that produces a surplus of lemons. We've made Meyer Lemon Marmalade, Lemon Tarts, and lemon juice goes into just about everything from salad dressing to a cup of tea. A while back, our neighbor, Rich gave us a jar of his preserved Meyer lemons, introducing us to yet another other means of enjoying the bountiful citrus. If you don't have Meyer lemons, other lemons will work in this recipe.
Preserving lemons is simple, yet they take a month to cure before you can use them. That leaves plenty of time to dream up recipes to put the lemons to good use. One such recipe is Braised Halibut with Pistachios and Preserved Lemons. My mouth waters when I think of how good the dish is.
Let me know if you have other favorite recipes that call for Preserved Lemons. I have a huge jar just starting to cure.
borrowed from Rich, a beautiful cookbook, Modern Moroccan by Gjille Basan
- 12 lemons (Meyers if you have them)
- 10 tablespoons sea salt
Scrub lemons until nice and clean. Cut a thin slice from the tops and bottoms of 10 lemons. (Set 2 whole lemons aside to juice later.) Cut two deep intersecting slits in the 10 lemon. Make sure each lemon is still attached, but the center should be nice and accessible to receive lots of salt. Heap sea salt into each crevice. Squish salted lemons into a clean jar or two.
Let lemons sit jarred for 3-4 days allowing the skins to soften. Then press the lemons again and cover them with juice squeezed from the two remaining lemons. Be sure the curing lemons are completely covered with juice.
Store in the refrigerator for at least a month before using. As needed, pluck a preserved lemon from the jar, rinse off salt and use as directed by your recipe.
P is usually the preserving-guy in our house - it was fun to have my turn.