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Preserved Lemons


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164 replies to this topic

#1 Suvir Saran

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Posted 25 July 2002 - 07:14 PM

Do you preserve lemons at home?

What is the best season to do so? Summer?

Do you buy preserved lemons?? What do you use them for?

I have often seen a red thing in some.. what is it?

#2 Brad S

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Posted 25 July 2002 - 07:40 PM

I make my preserved lemons Moroccan style with a safi mixture,really just salt a cinnamon stick,cloves coriander seeds,black peppercorns and bay leaf.

Besides using them in my kettle one martinies :shock: I primarily use them when preparing tagines.as far as the red thing,i'm not sure
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#3 Suvir Saran

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Posted 25 July 2002 - 08:18 PM

A caped chef,

What is a safi mixture?

The chef that taught me how to preserve these did so only with salt.

I have seen some in the market with a red stuff in the container...

How long do you keep the bottle closed? Do you put the jars in the sun at all?

Have a recipe for the preserved lemons?

#4 Suvir Saran

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Posted 25 July 2002 - 08:20 PM

A caped chef,

How do you make these preserved lemon Ketel One Martinis?

#5 Brad S

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Posted 25 July 2002 - 08:38 PM

Suvir,

Sorry I wasn't more specific "safi" is a city south of casablanca and north of essaouira,well known for fish and seafood dishes where preserved lemons are prodominent in many dishes.
I 1/4 th lemons without going all the way through,and sprinkle kosher salt on the flesh and the rind,I then put about a tablespoon of salt on the bottom of a mason jar,pack in the lemon and spices pushing down on the fruit to release it's juice to cover the fruit,if the lemon juice is not enough to cover I add some more,then cover,keep in a warm spot for about a month turning everyday and that's it. I always rince the lemon to get rid of all the excess salt before using. As for the kettle one martini,I just make a normal (very dry)martini and add a couple of slices of the cured rind.Love it.
I hope you try it,Suvir,you can also blanch the lemons first to soften the skin before preserving,but I don't
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#6 Suvir Saran

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Posted 25 July 2002 - 08:48 PM

I will make some over the weekend.
Thanks for the detailed recipe.
I have been making them with just salt.

Yours sounds so much better.

Thanks very much. :smile:

#7 polly

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Posted 01 August 2002 - 07:36 AM

A method that I just learned, to speed up the process of making preserved lemons, is to freeze the lemons first, then thaw them and proceed with the recipe.
The freezing and thawing breaks down some of the cell structure, softening the lemon rind.
How sad; a house full of condiments and no food.

#8 Suzanne F

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Posted 12 September 2002 - 12:05 PM

I did mine with Meyer lemons, half salt, half sugar, no spices. I usually find the all-salt kind too salty and I hate to rinse them. Just cut, pack in jar, add salt and sugar, plus some extra lemon juice to keep them covered.

BTW, I hope CC gets a fee everytime he mentions his favorite brand of vodka! :biggrin:

#9 anil

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Posted 12 September 2002 - 08:41 PM

A caped chef,

What is a safi mixture? 

The chef that taught me how to preserve these did so only with salt. 

I have seen some in the market with a red stuff in the container...

How long do you keep the bottle closed?  Do you put the jars in the sun at all? 

Have a recipe for the preserved lemon

Suvir, as the caped chef mentioned the folks in Safi preserve it differently - i.e adding dal-chinee,jeera,dhaniya-ke-beej etc. But basically you are right - Only salt is used in preserving the lemons.

Re: Kettle One ? Is this a variation to a dirty martini ?
anil

#10 johnjohn

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 07:50 AM

In cooking - Do you use the pulp or just the rind of a preserved lemon.

johnjohn

#11 Suzanne F

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 11:21 AM

Just the rind (zest). And as with fresh lemons, you remove the white part -- the pith.

Who has a recipe for preserved lemonade lemonade? I know there's one out there. This is different from the lime drink (loomi) in another thread.

#12 forever_young_ca

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 08:25 AM

I am doing Paula Wolfert's 30 day preserved lemons. I have them in a jar - 6 lemons plus the juice of 4 more with salt. After 5 days the lemons have juiced up nicely. The lemons however seem to float leaving the top lemon exposed a bit.

Is this normal? Will that exposed bit of lemon on the top get enough juice to preserve (I am turning the jar once a day) or will they finally soften enough not to float any more?

This is my first try at preserved lemons and just looking at them in the jar makes my mouth water :biggrin:
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#13 Suzanne F

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 08:31 AM

I filled the heaviest-weight plastic food storage bag I had with water and placed it on top to weight down the lemons. It conforms nicely to the odd shape.

I prefer this to using plates ever since an unfortunate incident of being unable to clean the unglazed part of a plate that weighted stuffed grape leaves. Did you know that mold can grow WITHIN china?? :shock:

#14 forever_young_ca

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 09:03 AM

Thanks Suzanne - an easy, very smart solution - why didn't I think of that :wub:

Thanks
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#15 saskanuck

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 02:07 PM

You just gave me a cool idea. I have a clean, interestingly-shaped empty olive jar, a bag of lemons, and a bunch of kosher salt I need to use up.

Guess what I'll be making? I don't know what they taste like, but lemons and salt are always good to me.

The plastic bag idea is something I would never have thought of either.

Edited by saskanuck, 06 January 2005 - 02:07 PM.

I don't mind the rat race, but I'd like more cheese.

#16 torakris

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 03:13 PM

uh-oh...
the lemons shouldn't be exposed?

2 weeks ago I made The new Gourmet Cookbook's version of Paula Wolfert's recipe (it is faster because they boil the lemon first) but the juice doesn't completely cover it.


Another related question.
I have never eaten preserved lemons before...
how long should I preserve them before eating?

I tasted the brine and it is really salty, do they get rinsed/wiped before using?

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#17 saskanuck

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 03:29 PM

torakris, that's the recipe I want to try as well. I'm not sure how long it would be before the lemons can be eaten, but I'd say a month or so.

You do rinse the lemons off before using them, and only use the peel from what I've read.

I don't think I have enough lemons to fill my entire olive jar and have enough left to squeeze juice from, so I'm going to make a smaller jar to start and see what happens.

I'm sure yours are fine without being submerged all the way, although you probably should do that now.
I don't mind the rat race, but I'd like more cheese.

#18 Jensen

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 04:13 PM

I made some about a year ago when I had a lemon glut. I still haven't used them. I kept them in the fridge though and they are "preserved" lemons, so I'm hoping they'll be okay. I suppose I'll know soon enough when I open a jar.

However, I'm still not sure what to do with them. :blink:

#19 Wolfert

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 04:21 PM

they are probably not only still ok, they are probably even better.


What to do with them? Well, I only have suggestions using them in Moroccan cooking. Actually you don't cook with them you garnish. Dishes such as leafy greens cooked down in olive oil until pasty then spiced with paprika and cumin and drizzled with olive oil. Wash one lemon, discard the pulp and sliver on top. Serve with crackling pita bread
Also good on red pepper salad.
Use in fish, chicken or lamb and lemon and olive dishes...Some recipes call for using the pulp to marinate the flesh beforehand.

Lots of chefs have come up with fabulous new ideas as well. I'm sure they will chime in once they read your call for help.

Edited by Wolfert, 06 January 2005 - 04:30 PM.

“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#20 Jensen

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 08:04 PM

Thanks for the ideas! It's probably heresy but I did pick up a new Trader Joe's simmer sauce today...Moroccan something-or-other. I suppose, if nothing else, I could liven it up with my preserved lemons.

#21 andiesenji

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 08:07 PM

On the onion confit thread I posted about making my last batch of onion confit with the inclusion of a preserved lemon, rinsed and cut into quarters.
The flavor of the onions is wonderful.
"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett
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#22 forever_young_ca

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 09:12 PM

am doing Paula Wolfert's 30 day preserved lemons.


Ms. Wolfert, I see that you are reading this thread. Since it is your recipe that I am using out of the "Slow Mediterranean Kitchen", I hope you don't mind if I direct this question to you - does it matter that some of the top of a couple of the lemons is exposed - or am I worrying about nothing? I shake the jar once or twice a day so the top lemons get a bit of juice over them.

By the way - I love this cookbook, every receipe I have tried has been wonderful. :biggrin:

Thanks in advance
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#23 Wolfert

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Posted 06 January 2005 - 11:59 PM

My question is just how exposed are the lemons? If most of the lemons are covered, leave them alone. In time the salt will draw out enough juice to cover them.
If you want to there is no rule that you can't open the jar and add more lemon juice to cover. If you do this, add another tablespoon of salt as well.

Glad you like the book. Thank you.
“C’est dans les vieux pots, qu’on fait la bonne soupe!”, or ‘it is in old pots that good soup is made’.

#24 divina

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 12:46 AM

I also made some preserved lemons using lemon slices, went faster and were great!
I had the maroccan daughter of one of the street vendors that comes to my little tuscan village come and teach me cooking!

I am sure the acidity in the lemons prevents mold etc.--- but I ended up adding an olive oil float.. to cover the pieces that floated..

#25 thursdaynext

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 07:44 AM

This occasionally happens with a batch I've made. If the lemons or limes have not yet released enough juice to cover, I simply upend the jar. Alternate top & bottom every couple of days until no longer needed.

I most often use them with roasted chicken. :wub:
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#26 andiesenji

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 08:30 AM

I filled the heaviest-weight plastic food storage bag I had with water and placed it on top to weight down the lemons. It conforms nicely to the odd shape.

I prefer this to using plates ever since an unfortunate incident of being unable to clean the unglazed part of a plate that weighted stuffed grape leaves. Did you know that mold can grow WITHIN china??  :shock:

View Post


Another solution, one that I use, also with the Ziploc bags - to avoid the possibility of the water leaking into the lemons.

I buy the glass "marbles" one can get at an acquarium store. Before and after use I put them in a mesh bag (the kind one uses for lingerie) and put it on the top shelf of my dishwasher to make sure they are sterilized.

I place these in a ziploc bag and use them to weight everything from lemons to sauerkraut, pickles of various kinds or the lemons in the big jar with sugar which are lightly fermenting.

These are very handy. I also use them to weight the bottoms of utensil holders or flatware holders.
Being glass, they don't retain flavors or molds and spores.
"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett
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#27 Suzanne F

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 08:51 AM

Andie, that is brilliant! Because, yes, sometimes the water does leak. Thanks!!!

#28 calimero

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 10:38 AM

Here is one of my favourete dish, chicken, preserved lemon and olives tajine; i use preserved lemon that i buy at the arab delicatessen.

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#29 forever_young_ca

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 11:21 AM

Here is one of my favourete dish, chicken, preserved lemon and olives tajine; i use preserved lemon that i buy at the arab delicatessen.


That looks delicious - would you mind sharing the recipe?
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#30 forever_young_ca

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 11:25 AM

My question is just how exposed are the lemons? If most of the lemons are covered, leave them alone. In time the salt will draw out enough juice to cover them.


There seems to be lots of juice in the jar. The problem is the lemons seem to "float in the lemon juice". There is not that much exposed, and there seems to be less and less as time goes on. (Maybe the lemons are getting "water logged" in their own juice :biggrin: )

I think that I am worrying about nothing, and that I will simply leave them alone and shake the jar a couple of times a day. I can hardly wait until they are done.

Ms Wolfert - I have ordered your Moroccan cookbook so that I have some great things to make with my preserved lemons. :laugh:

Thanks for your help
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