Preserved Lemons

Processing: N/A
Storage: Pantry  3-4 weeks then refrigerator 1-2 years
Yield: 4 cups per batch
  
Enjoy these salt preserved lemon skins with couscous (or quinoa) or add some zing to your favourite recipe using these lemons instead of fresh lemon.
 
Ingredients:
6-8 lemons
¼ cup sea salt, pickling or kosher salt
Lemon juice (fresh or bottled), if required

 
Wash lemons.
Wash lemons well, soaking in warm water with a cap of vinegar to remove wax (if store bought).

 
Slice lemons.
Discard ends of lemons. Cut lemons almost into quarters, leaving base intact – or cut into halves, wedges or slices for packing into smaller jars. Press salt between lemon quarters (or layer lemons and salt into jars if using smaller pieces), approximately 1 tablespoon salt per lemon. Add salt into the base of the jar, then a layer of lemons, pressing down and packing lemons tightly, ensuring they are submerged in juice before sealing jars tightly.

  
Ferment lemons in a cool, dark and dry place (i.e. pantry) for several weeks.
Shake jar gently every few days until salt has dissolved. Check occasionally to ensure lemon is submerged under lemon juice – if not, add extra lemon juice to prevent mould growth. Lemons are finished fermenting when the skin is semi-opaque with a glossy, slippery appearance, approximately 3-4 weeks (this varies according to the temperature stored – shorter period if warm, longer period if cold).

  
Refrigerate preserved lemons.
To prevent further fermentation, refrigerate lemons and use as needed, discarding pith and rinsing if desired.

  
TIPS
  • You will need approximately 2 ½ pounds (1kg) lemons per half-gallon (2L) jar;
  • Try making preserved limes – or a mixture of lemon and limes;
  • Speed up the fermentation stage by freezing lemons overnight after cutting, then thaw and continue with recipe – this softens the skins greatly;
  • Use a “pizza saver” aka pizza table to keep the lemon submerged under the juice;
  • Pack as much salt as possible into each lemon – this helps to draw out the juice from the lemon;
  • To use: remove preserved lemon from jar, discarding flesh and rinsing skin if desired to reduce saltiness.
  • Finely slice or dice as desired before serving.
  • Spices – try adding bay leaves, black peppercorns, cinnamon, coriander seed & fennel seed.
  
     

Share the knowledge of home food preservation!

Copyright
Copyright © 2023 Megan Radaich. All rights reserved.
Except as permitted under the Australian Copyright Act of 1968, no part of this website may be reproduced or utilised in any form by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without written permission from the author. Disclaimer
 
Acknowledgement 
Kaya Wanjoo. Food Preserving kaditj kalyakoorl moondang-ak kaaradj midi boodjar-ak nyininy, yakka wer waabiny, Noongar moort. Ngala kaditj baalap kalyakoorl nidja boodjar wer kep kaaradjiny, baalap moorditj nidja yaakiny-ak wer moorditj moort wer kaditj Birdiya wer yeyi.
Hello and Welcome. Food Preserving acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we live, work and play, the Nyoongar people. We recognise their connection to the land and local waterways, their resilience and commitment to community and pay our respect to Elders past and present.