It’s the day before Thanksgiving, and I know what you’re thinking about…
Making preserved lemons!
OK, maybe not. But making these puppies is so easy that you really could whip them up today, even amongst all your planning and cooking and prepping for the big day tomorrow. I was able to make these while the baby napped (and she does NOT nap for long!). The only part that takes any time at all is sterilizing the jars.
I used Eugenia Bone’s recipe from her book, Well-Preserved, with a few changes. First, I put mine in four half-pint jars for smaller gifts, rather than two pint jars. And because of the smaller size, cutting the lemons into eighths instead of fourths was a boon.
You use Meyer lemons for this, which are thought to be a cross between a true lemon and an orange, so they are sweeter than regular lemons and have much thinner skin, which makes them perfect for preserving and juicing. I can’t tell you how lovely they smell—just sniff the peel! They have a deliciously floral lemon smell.
In fact, may I suggest that once you’re done juicing for the extra juice you need, throw those mangled lemons into a pitcher of ice cold water and enjoy! Absolutely refreshing.
Preserved lemons are common in Moroccan dishes, and Eugenia Bone gives several recipe suggestions in her book, but what I’m really hoping to try to recreate is the pickled lemon margarita from Pickled Lemon. Maybe I’ll hit up chef Robin Bar-On for the recipe!
Total Price: $1.40 each for 4 half-pints
$0.75 each for 10 Meyer lemons
$0.53 each for four Ball half-pint jars (new)
~$0.50 for salt
Check out the other consumable gifts in this series:
No. 1: Pepper-Infused Vodka
No. 2: Jam
No. 3: Pie in a Jar
No. 4: Sugar and Spice
No. 5: Hot Chocolate on a Stick
No. 6: Gingies
No. 7: Christmas Granola
No. 8: Preserved Lemons
No. 9: Gingerbread Biscotti
No. 10: Cracker Crack
No. 11: Satsumettes
No. 12: Apricot Nut Bread
P.S. I’ve been seeing a lot of other DIY Christmas gift recipes around the blogs, including these for cranberry liqueur and coffee liqueur from Creative Culinary. If you’ve got one to share, let us know in comments!