One of the lovely things about winter in South Gippsland is the abundance of delicious, juicy lemons. There are plenty of fabulous ways to use lemons - lemon curd, lemon syrup cake, lemon meringue pie, marmalade, lemon pickle, a slice of lemon in your gin and tonic...
One of my favourites is preserved lemons. Keep a jar of this delicious condiment in your fridge and give instant zing to salads, tagines, paellas, couscous and rice.
Preserved lemons are so easy to make. This recipe is adapted from SBS food
4 large lemons
1 cup cooking salt
1 cinnamon stick
2 or 3 bay leaves
4 cardamom pods
1. Wash a 1L jar in warm soapy water and rinse well. Place onto a tray and dry the jar in the oven for approximately 10 minutes to sterilise.
2. Place the lemons and salt into a large non-reactive bowl. Massage the salt into the lemon, squeezing the juice out of the flesh of each lemon wedge.
3. Arrange the lemon wedges in the cooled jar with the skin of the lemons facing out. Arrange the cinnamon stick, peppercorns, bay leaves and cardamom pods as you go. Pack down tightly
4. Pour the lemon juice and salt from the bowl into the jar, ensuring the lemon pieces are well covered. Add extra lemon juice if necessary. Seal the jar with a non-reactive lid and leave at room temperature for one day.
5. Turn the jar to disburse the salt and juice through the lemon, then leave to cure in the refrigerator for 1 month before use. The preserved lemon will keep for up to 12 months.