Preserved Meyer Lemons – Speedy Recipe
Meyer Lemons are perfect for preserving! With their thin skins, bright lemony-color and fragrant flesh they have a sweeter, more floral taste. These beauties will pickle in their own juices.
I’m curing my Meyer Lemons in a vintage Ball Jar ~ inside the screw cap in a lining, is white milk glass.
Once you have made a jar of Preserved Lemons – believe me you will use them in so many recipes!
These segments of preserved lemons will wow your taste buds!
So quick to make… just need a little patience waiting for them to preserve.
Unlike fresh lemons (which you use the juice and rind) – Preserved Lemons are a different with a silken-softened texture and unique pickled taste.
The sharpness mellows, the lemon flavor intensifies and the salt and fermentation creates a punchy umami characteristic that lends incredible depth to dishes.
And – the bacteria developed during the fermentation process are extremely good for your digestive system!
The prized part of these preserved lemon are their rinds.
To use, the lemons are rinsed under cool water to remove some salt.
The rind can be minced, chopped or julienned. But – the flesh is totally usable, and so is the preserved lemon juice!
It’s just as wonderful as the lemons themselves – splash some over roasted veggies, chicken or fish and add the liquid where you need some brightening, in salad dressing and sauces.
Preserved Lemons have been pickled in salt and their own juices. They typically need to cure for about a month before they are ready to use…
My “Speedy-recipe” moves things along a little quicker – in 2 weeks I start to use them, but they become even more aromatic in the weeks to come and so lovely in a month.
With my method the lemons are placed in boiling water for a few minutes, then cut when cooled and added to a jar with salt and lemon juice to cover.
Traditionally, the lemons are not pre-cooked, and will take longer for the salt to ferment them.
Meyer lemons will “preserve” quicker because they have very thin walls of rind.
Yes – you can use fresh lemons in this recipe as well, scrub the skins of and wax on the exterior and proceed.
Fresh lemons will take a month before they are ready to use (their skins are much thicker than the Meyer variety.) Eureka lemons are the most available variety in the US.
Meyer lemons are typically available in cooler weather – from November to March. I get bags of them at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s.
Meyer lemons are less acidic and sweeter in taste – smaller than Eureka lemons with a hue that is sometimes a bit golden-orange.
Preserving lemons originated in North Africa and the Mediterranean, as lemon trees spread from Morocco to India so did the need to preserve them – introducing preserved lemons into a wide variety of Middle Eastern and Asian cuisines.
Uses for Preserved Lemons – what to do with them!
- In recipes where you desire a bright lemony-fresh zip
- Enhances Soups and Stews
- A flavor element for Salsa
- As an ingredient in Marinades
- Adds a new zip to Pestos
- A new flavor enhancer for Pasta
- Pairs perfectly with Grains & Rice
- Traditionally used in Moroccan Tagines
- Adds a lemony note to Salads and Salad Dressings
See all my Zesty Citrus Recipes
Enjoy this ZESTY recipe!
Preserved Meyer Lemons – Speedy Recipe
- 6 large large Meyer Lemons scrubbed and dried
- 1 1/4 cups fresh lemon juice (from about 5 juicy lemons)
- 5 tablespoons kosher salt (I use Baleine Sea Salt Kosher from the Mediterranean)
- For this speedy method – add the meyer lemons to a medium sized pot and add cold water to cover. Bring to a boil – then cover and cook at a bare simmer for 5 minutes to soften the lemons.
- In the meantime – juice the lemons; you will need 1 1/4 cups.When the lemons are done, drain the water in the sink, place the lemons on a cutting board and let them cool for 10 minutes.
- Cut each lemon into 8 pieces. Cut in quarters lengthwise, then cut each piece in half.Place all the lemon pieces in a bowl and add 5 T. of kosher, coarse salt.Gently stir in. Top with the fresh lemon juice.
- Pour into a sterile glass container with a very good seal. I used a 32 ounce ball jar. Push the lemons down gently so the lemon juice covers them.
- Place in a dark place in your cupboard. Stir up gently every day – for five days.
- After 5 days, give another gentle stir and place in the refrigerator. You will notice more juice accumulating in the jar.Their flavor really comes to life in 3 – 4 weeks.Any extra juices in the jar can be added to many recipes. Will last for at least 6 month refrigerated.
The salt ratio is quite high, so no problem with botulism. The rind is the prized part of the preserved lemon – although I use the flesh and the juices in recipes too! This recipe may not be reproduced without the consent of its author, Karen Sheer.