Sunday, June 2, 2013

Lushous Lemons

Living in Southern California has it's perks.  I miss the seasons, but it's an easy trade for fresh food all year round.  Moving into this rental house and starting our own garden has been amazing.  We keep wanting to do more and to have more land to grow more.  Fruit, citrus, and avocado trees would be an amazing addition.  However, we've managed to find friends and neighbors we can barter with or who are just so generous that they give it away.  I've been fortunate with many who have lemon trees and seem to have a continuous supply.

So, recently with a big box full of lemons I went a bit crazy and made quite a few "lemony" things.  I apologize for my terrible and improper way of sharing recipes, but I hope the main idea comes through.

I started with preserved lemons.  I mostly went by memory of what my mom and friend did.  There are lots of recipes out there and it seems like I mostly did what they all say too.

Cut lemons into quarters but not all the way.  Pack in with coarse salt.  I buy mine from the Asian stores and this one was particularly larger.  I put some on the bottom and sprinkled some on the top as well.  Within hours I noticed the juices come out. 

I did "zest" some of them, and by zest I used a julianne cutter on some of them.

A week later it looked like this.  I did end up adding another two into the jar.

I also used the zest to make two other items.

Candied lemons which I just cooked down in sugar and a tablespoon of water.  Unfortunately, I cooked it too long and the sugar solidified after it cooled.  So, it was perfect to use in recipes.  I used it when I made bread pudding

Current and Candied Lemon bread pudding.
Left over baguette
handful of currents
candied lemon peel
honey or sugar (as you like)
eggs (I used 3)

Mix the wet ingredients (you can warm the milk and temper the eggs if you'd like), then add the broken bits of bread and let soak 10 min.  I added the lemon and currents and let soak another 20 min mixing occasionally.

Bake 350 till tops turn golden and liquid is mostly absorbed.  (It will puff up so leave some space. I did mine in the toaster oven which is why the tops got a bit burned!)


The other thing I made with the zest was lemon salt.
I mixed the zest with a handful of salt and put in a shallow cookie sheet (toaster for me).  I put in on the lowest setting for about 20 min and then left it out for 1-2 days to dry out.  There is also a good recipe on Sunset 

The left is my salt and on the right is Hawaiian pink salt.

I used this salt as a garnish when I made lemon risotto in the pressure cooker.

Lemon Risotto with Lemon Salt and Truffle Oil
2 cups Arborio rice
5 generous cups of chicken stock or water
 salt (if your stock is homemade and has no salt)
Juice of a lemon or two (depending on the size)  About 1/4 cup
Zest of a lemon

Add all in pressure cooker and heat and stir without lid till bubbling.

Mix well and close.  Once the pressure cooker starts time it for 6 min.  Turn off and let it sit till all the steam is gone (about 15 min for my old one).  Wait a bit longer, and then mix it quickly a few times.  This really helps the starch come out and thicken like risotto should be.

Mix in 1 tsp olive oil or butter and lemon salt.  Taste and add salt (regular or lemon) as needed.

Serve with a drizzle of truffle oil on top and a garnish of salted lemon zest.  I also served it with the two salts on the side.

Shared on: More the Merrier Mondays, Eco-Kids Tuesday, Tuesdays with a Twistwildcrafting wednesday, Wildlife Wednesday, simple lives thursdays, HomeAcre Hop,  small footprint family, Friday Nature Table, fresh eggs daily, Transformation Thursday, Thrifty Home,  Fresh Bites Friday, Wednesday Fresh Food,  Sunday Parenting Party, hip homeschool moms,  No Time for Flash Cards, Living Green Tuesday, Montessori Monday, Farm Girl Blog Fest,  Food Renegade, Eat Make Grow, Saturday Show and Tell, Kids in the Kitchen, Learning for Life, Mums Make Lists,

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