Ahhh… it’s February already! Time for a new goal, keeping in mind that January’s goal of greens 3 times a week, can still play on!
February’s goal for me is to keep a food journal. Menopause has kicked me in the butt and I have gained much unwanted and unhealthy weight. So, I need to buckle down and follow my own healthy advice! I hate noting everything I eat for many reasons – so much time, am I right? – but it definitely works so here I go! I’ll keep you posted!
Have you ever used preserved lemons in your cooking? If not, you are missing out. They add such vibrance, brightness and complexity to many dishes, even very ordinary ones.
Now we all love lemons for their bright, citrusy flavor that can wake up a dish – make it bold, fresh and tart. But sometimes it can overpower a more subtle dish and that’s where the magic of preserved lemons comes through. The initial purpose of preserving lemons was to make this winter fruit last all year long. But there became a pleasant result. The salting and fermenting mellows out their bold, tart flavor and brings out their lemony essence!
Preserved lemons are a kitchen staple in North African and Indian kitchens. They are used in everything from stews and tagines to salads, rice and vegetables. Almost any recipe could benefit from the flavor of preserved lemons.
And, yes, you can buy them and be done with it. But it’s so easy to preserve lemons yourself and then you also have control over the quality of the ingredients. All you really need to make these yourself are some lemons, some salt, some water and a jar! Oh, and about a month… maybe you could get by with a few weeks, but a month is best. And then they can last up to a year under the right conditions.
Once you’ve preserved your lemons, it’s mostly the rind, not the juice or pulp, you will be using. Rinse the salt off, chop them up and add them to anything your heart desires.
I’ll be sending some recipe ideas your way in the coming month… while you’re waiting for your yummy lemons to preserve. So, get on it and you’ll be ready to see the magic!
Let me know if you make these and comment here, or talk to me on Instagram @healthysexykitchen!
Easy Preserved Lemons
- 1 sterilized glass jar with tight lid I used quart size jar (about 1 liter)
- 8 whole lemons I used half regular lemons and half Meyer lemons
- 1/2 cup Kosher salt more if needed
- 2 fresh rosemary sprigs optional
- Place salt in a shallow bowl. Refill if needed.
- Slice lemons into 1/2 inch thick slices.
- Place each lemon slice into the salt, pressing down to coat well on both sides.
- Place each slice into the jar, creating tight layers. When almost halfway up the jar, add one sprig of rosemary.
- Continue with the lemon slices, pushing down firmly to release the juices with your fingers. Repeat until 3/4 full and add a second rosemary sprig, if using.
- Repeat with lemon slices until you reach the top of the jar, packing them as tightly as possible. Add lemon juice as necessary to ensure all the slices are completely covered.
- At the end use a lemon half or just a lemon end piece and place it on top of everything, pressing down. This will hold everything down once the lid presses down on it. This lemon part will not be used, it will eventually be discarded, but everything underneath will be great.
- Seal tightly, turn the jar upside down and right side up to mix. Then leave the jar in a cool, dark spot to ferment for 4-10 days. Turn upside down and back periodically throughout this time and burp the jar by loosening the lid and releasing air.
- At this point, refrigerate for 3 weeks before using.