Preserved Lemons… worth the wait!

Getting ready to soak for 3 days in clean water.
Both the February and the March Daring Kitchen Challenges included preserved lemons, but I had only heard about them in passing and gave them little thought.  Because they took at least 30 days to cure, I started them with no particular recipe in mind and planned to sort it out later.
The recipe was quite simple, lemons, salt and a sterile glass jar.  There were some optional spices you could have added to the mixture, but I wanted to start off easy for my first time.

After the 3 days soaking and the slicing.
The recipe called for 5 lemons sliced in quarters but leaving the ends connected.  I could not fit all 5 lemons in my jar, but I managed to get 3.5 of them inside.
The lemons after 10 days in the jar.
The jar was opened at one point during the curing cycle because my husband thought it was honey, but, so I am not sure if that had any effect on the final product because when I finally opened them to make Tagine of Chicken with Preserved Lemons and Olives, a vacume seal was still in place.
After 42 days in the jar.
The recipe directed that you remove the lemons with a clean utensil, which I neglected to do and rinse them be for using them.
Once they were rinsed, I discarded the pulp and used as directed.

I also plan to make a preserved lemon risotto, but what are some other ideas I could try with the rest?  All ideas are welcome!

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Author: caseyangelova

Eating, Gardening & Living in Bulgaria

23 thoughts on “Preserved Lemons… worth the wait!”

  1. Preserved lemons leave a wonderful flavor. In Thailand they use preserved, dried limes. It's just marvellous.

    Btw, how do you get that 'read more' on your posts? I've been trying to figure out how to just the first few lines of my posts.


  2. Oops, sorry, I meant to say, in Thailand they pickle limes and in Iran and Kuwait, they use dried limes.

    The fresh limes are first boiled in salt water then are sun-dried until they turn black. They don't look very appetizing but they impart a tangy flavor. It's quite earthy, really.

    Sometimes they're sold in powdered form and sprinkled on rice dishes. Look for them at your Iranian grocers. My mom had this all the time in her pantry.

    I still can't figure out how show just the first few lines of my post. So do I just type

    “–> CLICK HERE TO READ MORE< --" in EDIT HTML? Sorry, I'm not the most tech savvy person.


  3. KM – I totally misunderstood what you were looking for in in regards to the whole read more thing. If you are using Blogger, you need to insert a “jump break” into your post. The icon looks like a sheet of paper torn in half and it should be located just right of the image icon. I hope that is helpful.
    I think the lime thing is quite interesting!

    CCR – I wish that citrus grew in BG. I am about 100 miles too far north for that. The Greek boarder is about 2.5 hours from my house, you can see the climate change once you hit the olive groves.

    Emily & Ceecee- Please give it a try. It is a unique taste.

    Sharlene – The salt does effect the taste, so when cooking I don't salt the dish till after the lemons have done their thing and there usually isn't any need.

    Penny – I think they keep for a long time if done right. Open them up and share. Are they edible?

    Biren – Kitchen Masochist posted a comment about dried limes, so maybe you can dry the lemons as well?

    Sweetlife – The flavor was interesting. I am about to put up a post showing the meal I made with the preserved lemons. I though it was great, but my husband was not a fan of the preserved lemons…


  4. 5 Star – I would love to get some Meyer lemons. I am trying to figure out a way to smuggle a small tree in my suitcase next time I am in the US. The recipe actually suggests using Meyer lemons!


  5. I LOVE preserved lemons, they are good in practically everything! If you want stuff to do with them, I did a Tunisian tuna tart and a veggie Tunisian sandwich … so good. In my January 2010 archives, check it out if you want. But I didn't make my own, so you are reminding me that I really should!


  6. The lemons along with the spices used in the chicken dish on the next post, I thought were lovely especially after the comments of the addition of prunes, or raisins and cinnamons for sweetness. Good luck on your Mayer Lemon Tree!


  7. preserved limes are a brilliant idea during harvesting wen u have no idea wat to do with so many limes.. im gonna try it with a spicy thai chilly and some fresh oregano from my patch


  8. Trix – I will totally check out your archive for ideas! Thanks!

    Thanks Ana – I am going to explore some Meyer lemon options in Europe first. Less tricky customs-wise.

    Hansel – Let me know how the limes turn out! I am thinking of preserving some, but I don't know what to do with them yet.


  9. We absolutely love them and always have a few in the fridge, and start panicking when we get low! 🙂

    Finely shredded preserved lemon on basically any salad/greens; a thin slice in a martini; as a tasty on an hors d'oeuvres plate ..

    You can also pickle them in oil, add spices (coriander seed, chilis, pinch of cumin) … they are incredibly versatile.

    Meyer lemons are incredible when pickled!!


  10. Nitamedia – I will have to check out your video. Fruit and veggie carvings are beautiful. I had a chance to observe some Thai chefs doing their thing and it was amazing!

    J – I will try preserving lemons again, but with some spices, and if I could actually find Meyer lemons in Bulgaria, I would be all over it!


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