There was no way we’d use up all of the Meyers that RGBistro sent us before they started to go south, so naturally we started to debate on the best way to make them last. Michael suggested some sort of jelly or marmalade; I shrewdly pointed out that we never eat anything with marmalade as it is, so why not preserve them? We had certainly seen enough recipes calling for preserved lemons to make them an ingredient of interest, and now that we had a bounty of the somewhat sweet variety, it would be fun to incorporating them into various dishes, no?
Shockingly (seriously–I live with a man who is very persuasive and a bit stubborn at times) my argument won out, and we started the process of preserving lemons a few weeks ago.
In the realm of canning/pickling things at home, it’s really not difficult to do this–and Meyers are still very much available at your local supermarket thanks to an uptick in growers over the last few years increasing their Meyer lemon trees, thus extending the selling period–but like most projects, it requires a little time upfront and some patience in the days that follow. Based on the recipe that we got from our brand-new Gourmet cookbook (courtesy of Eating for England), about half are blanched in boiling water and then cut into wedges, tossed with salt and then covered with the juice of the remaining lemons, all sealed in a jar and left to sit for 5 days, shaking once daily to stir them all up. A covering of olive oil on the fifth day helps with the preservation process, or so I’m told.
The recipe for preserving the lemons can be found here (though they don’t tell you what to do with the oil; add it to the top of the lemons after the fifth day). Now we just need some fun recipe ideas to make with preserved Meyer lemons. Dear readers–do you have any suggestions?