Making Preserved Lemons

I like to make homemade Christmas presents. This year, the only one I managed was a couple of jars of preserved lemons for my brother-in-law the chef and our friend John, who is a serious cook.

Making the lemons is surprisingly easy. You put a couple of tablespoons of sea salt in the bottom of a clean quart canning jar, then quarter the lemons lengthwise so the sections are just barely held together at one end. Open up the lemon and salt the sections liberally, then pack them into the jar, squishing them down as you go, then cover them with fresh lemon juice and a couple more teaspoons of salt. I added some peppercorns and coriander seeds to make the jar look interesting and (I hope) the lemons taste better. Next time, I might also add some garlic cloves. The lemons ferment on the counter for three days, then in the refrigerator for three weeks. You can use them to cook Moroccan chicken and I don’t know what other dishes.

As for how they taste, I’ll have to wait for a report from my victims gift recipients.

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