Preserved lemons are a staple in Indian and North African cuisine, and the benefits are amazing.
Lemons are a great addition to any healthy routine, and the fermented version adds a rich complexity that can be added to smoothies, salads, or meat dishes — almost anything.
Homemade Preserved Lemons
It’s so easy to preserve lemons that there’s no reason any cook should be without a jar at their disposal.
- 4-6 organic lemons
- 1 tablespoon of sea salt per lemon
- Sterilized quart jar with lid
1. Remove any stems and slice a deep X into each end of the lemon – you’re basically cutting each lemon nearly into quarters but not going all the way through.
2. Pinching the lemon so that it’s separated into halves, completely cover it in a little less than half a tablespoon of salt. Pinch it in half the other way and pour the same amount of salt into the other half.
3. Pour a layer of salt into the bottom of the quart jar and then press the salt-filled lemon into the bottom of jar and repeat with the remaining lemons.
4. Squeeze the lemon together and then squeeze it into the jar. Add a bit more salt on top of the lemon.
5. Seal the jar well and leave out for 2-3 days, pressing the lemons down once a day to make sure they’re sitting below the lemon juice to ensure preservation.
6. Move the lemons to the fridge and wait three weeks before using to allow the rinds to pickle fully.
To use, rinse the lemons, scrape off the pulp, discard any seeds and chop or mince the rind. They’ll keep in the fridge for up to 6 months.
Once you’ve preserved lemons, it’s the rind, not the juice or pulp, that you’ll be using in your recipes. Just rinse the salt off, remove the flesh from the rind, and add them to everything.