Cooking with Lemons

lemonsLemons are known as a “flavour catalyst” which means they get the taste buds going helping other foods come to life. Lemons are acidic so their juice is great in marinades for weeknight meals as the acid helps to tenderise the meat quickly (but don’t marinate for too long as they can then turn the meat tough). And using the lemon zest (the outer yellow skin/rind removed from the lemon) can add a strong citrus flavour to your cook as it is full of concentrated lemon oils.

If your lemon tree has gone into overdrive you are probably trying to think of clever ideas for using them. Passing them on to family, friends and neighbours is great but here are a couple of extra things you could do.

Preserved Lemons

Are fantastic in summer salads (using the zest) or blitzed into sauces and dressings to add a salty and tangy flavour. Jamie Oliver used them a lot in 15 Minute Meals to add flavour to dishes quickly. But why pay for them, if you’ve got free lemons in the garden they are incredibly easy to make!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A large clean jar with a tight fitting lid
  • Enough lemons to fill the jar
  • Additional lemons for juicing (1 and a half times the amount of lemons you are preserving)
  • A tablespoon of salt per lemon

What to do:

  1. Slice the lemons into quarters but not all the way through, leave the quarters all attached at the base.
  2. Fill each lemon with approximately 1 tablespoon of salt and place them in the jar
  3. Squeeze the juice from the extra lemons and pour over the lemons in the jar
  4. Top up the jar with boiling water
  5. Sit the jar on the kitchen bench for about 10 days shaking it once a day to mix up the juice and salt
  6. After 10 days they are ready to be used!
  7. Store in the fridge for up to 6 months

lemon curd 2 300w 300h exposureLemon Curd

We love lemon curd as it can so easily be spread on a scone, layered into a buttercake or dollop onto cupcakes instead of icing. You can also blitz a cup of lemon curd together with a block of cream cheese to make a “cheats cheesecake”. Here’s our lemon curd recipe.

lemon delicious 2 300w heal pixelmator jpgLemon Delicious Pudding

What a hit this recipe has been this week! We got lots of messages about it going in reader’s ovens that night. If you missed it on Tuesday, here’s where you can find the recipe.

Cleaning with Lemons?!?

You sure can! Here’s five ideas:

  • Windows & Mirrors – 25ml lemon juice with 1 litre water in a spray bottle, spray & wipe.
  • Chopping Board – cut a lemon in half and rub it on your chopping board, will clean and deodorise.
  • Taps & Faucets – cut a lemon in half, dip in salt then scrub onto taps & faucets and rinse to remove stains.
  • Microwave – ¾ cup of water with a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice in a microwave safe bowl. Cook for a couple of minutes until steaming, leave for 10 minutes then wipe down with a cloth. How good will your microwave smell!
  • Laundry – add a tablespoon of lemon juice in with your detergent to give your clothes a sweet smell.

What do you do with lemons? Share your great cooking and cleaning tips in the comments below.

2 thoughts on “Cooking with Lemons

  1. Hi Girls I have found that leaving half used lemons in my dishwasher keeps it always smelling fresh,
    replace only once a week it also keeps it sparkling clean and its free!!

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