Many of you know I am a huge fan of fermented foods, and have written a few blog posts on the benefits of this for your gut health. Plus a recipe of my own on how to make kombucha. So when I was contacted by Gigi from My Fermented Foods with an offer to write me a blog post, I jumped at the chance of sharing more knowledge. (This is not an affiliated post – just sharing a mutual love of fermenting).
Take it away Gigi!
Food fermentation has been around for many centuries. Our ancestors used this ancient method of preserving food so that it can last them over the cold winter months. Preserved lemons like other fermented foods have a long history. Traditional and simplest way of preserving lemons is with salt.
Preserved lemons are super easy to make and are widely used in tagines, salads, braises, fish dishes and sauces. They have a unique pickled taste which is easily distinguished from a fresh lemon taste.
If you enjoy creating new flavors, you can add different herbs and spices like coriander, chili, bay leaves, cinnamon and others in your preserved lemon recipes.
Here is a simple recipe on how to make your first batch of preserved lemons with just two ingredients – fresh lemons and salt.
- juice of 3 lemons
- ½ sea salt/pink Himalayan salt
- 8 lemons (organic if possible)
- 1L glass jar with lid
- Prepare glass jar by washing it in soapy warm water.
- Squeeze juice from 3 lemons then mix the juice with the salt.
- Slice the ends from the lemons to create a flat top and bottom.
- Slice the lemons crosswise into quarters stopping 10mm from the bottom. Ensure the sections remain connected.
- Open a lemon in half and add ½ teaspoon of the juice and salt mixture. Repeat the same process for remaining lemons.
- Start packing lemons into the jar as tightly as possible. You can use a wooden spoon to push them in.
- Keep pressing the lemons until they are submerged in the juice, then seal the lid.
- Store the lemons in a cool dry place for a week then move the jar into the fridge.
- Once the peels become translucent, the lemons are ready for use.
- To use a lemon firstly wash it under cold water to remove excess salt then remove the rind. Cut the lemon peel in slices as per recipe you’re making.
- Store the lemons in the fridge for up to 6 months.
We hope this recipe inspires you to make other fermented foods like sauerkraut or kimchi. Fermented foods are great for keeping our immune system strong and improving our digestive system. They are naturally rich in probiotics and different vitamins.
Leading up to the winter months it is the ideal time to start making your first batches of fermented foods at home. Keep in mind when fermenting in cooler months it takes longer for food to ferment due to limited sunlight and room temperature being lower than usual.
What are your favourite fermented foods? I am a huge fan of coconut yoghurt myself. Please leave a comment below and share your yummy foods.
If you would like to contact Gigi, please click the below link.