It is now deep in the winter months here on Crete and although it has even snowed down to the coast (!) this year, there are still quite a lot of activities to get up to, in- and outdoors.
Right now, it is citrus season in Greece and what is on every table during a meal is lemons! This acidic fruit is used in various ways, but mostly just squeezed over meals.
Other than acidifying your plate, here I will share two techniques how to preserve the lemony flavor for months to come. One for a sweet tooth one for savory dishes using the entire fruit.
First, candied lemon peels!
This is a bit of a lengthy process, but totally worth the work. The juicy insides can be used for lemon tea with honey. Or, if it is warm out, for lemonade…
Here is a quick breakdown of the process. Check out the video for visuals.
- Cut and prepare your lemon peels (best to use organic of course!)
- Keep the insides for your drinks or other projects
- In a saucepan, bring the peels to a boil in water for 30 seconds, then pour away the water.
- Do this two more times (a total of three times). It helps to get rid of the bitter flavor.
- Dissolve 2:1 sugar:water in a pan and add the peels
- Simmer until the white of the peels become transparent
- Take the peels out and let cool down and slightly dry on a baking sheet or foil
- Save lemon syrup for other drinks or for flavoring water kefir!
- Coat lemon peels in another layer of sugar.
- So much sugar. But great for cakes, crepe, and of course Greek yogurt.
The second process we talk about is Moroccan style salted-lemons.
Here we use the entire lemon. Here is a quick breakdown of the process. Check out the video for visuals.
- Cut the ends off the lemon
- Cut in half and then slice the halves into quarters but don’t cut all the way through
- Cover in salt (non-iodized) and push salt into the cuts of the lemons.
- Press into a cleaned jar.
- While working on the lemons and slat, the juices from the lemons will be pulled out by the salt and the lemons will get more flexible.
- Push the lemons down until the jar is full to the top with lemons, the lemons’ juices and salt. No water needed.
- Allow jar of lemons to sit up to one month or longer outside of the fridge to acquire more flavor.
- Use for a tangine, salad dressing, adding extra flavors to meals etc.
Remember – these lemons are very sour and salty, so you don’t need much to do a lot!
Edible Alchemy will be opening up a type of Wilderness Retreat on Crete March 2019! Be in the wilderness i.e. off-grid, learn new skills of fermentation, foraging, mountaineering and clear your mind with nature and yoga in the mornings. We would love to have you join.
More details on to come – but if you are keen – contact us to put you on our retreat list with upcoming information!