Are You Being Preserved?

Pucker up this summer with this easy and versatile recipe for preserved lemons.

Cambria design shown: RUXLEY™

Sure, you could seek out preserved lemons at a specialty store, but we turned to the New York Times for tips on making preserved lemons at home. It takes just 15 minutes to throw the ingredients together and about three weeks for the curing process to work its magic.

First, gather nine organic lemons, kosher salt, a heaping tablespoon of black peppercorns, and two bay leaves. Next, scrub 3 to 5 of the lemons: enough to fit snugly in a medium jar with a tight-fitting lid. Slice each lemon from its top to within ½ inch of its bottom—almost cutting them into quarters but leaving them attached at one end. Rub kosher salt over the cut surfaces, then reshape the fruit. Cover the bottom of the jar with more kosher salt. Fit all the cut lemons in, breaking them apart if necessary. Sprinkle salt on each layer.

Now, press the lemons down to release their juices. Add the peppercorns and bay leaves to the jar, then squeeze the additional lemons into the jar until juice covers everything. Close the jar and let the contents start to ripen at cool room temperature. Shake the jar every day for 3 to 4 weeks, or until the rinds are tender to the bite. Then store it in the refrigerator.

To use, remove a piece of lemon and rinse it. Feel free to add more fresh lemons to the brine as you use them up. You can mince the rinds and ADD THEM TO DISHES raw or at the very end of cooking. The pulp can be added to make the contents of a simmering pot pop.

Take a look at the original recipe HERE.