Saturday, May 29, 2010


Lemons are a delicious fruit that seem to be apart of everyday life now through their accompaniment with water. But lemons have so much more to offer and can be used in so many ways from appetizers to dessert. They are very versatile and the whole fruit can be used (the juice, skin, and pulp). Lemon trees produced around 2,000 lemons per year per tree. There are many different types of lemons produced, a lot more varieties than you would suspect. These include; eureka, bush lemon, lisbon, meyer, ponderosa, variegated pink, verna, villafranca, yen ben and yuzu. Lemon trees are native to Asia and are taken from small evergreen trees. Lemons are available all year round and when selecting a lemon look for one that is smooth which brightly coloured yellow skin (greenish colour means they are under ripe).

Lemons can be used so many great ways, to flavour water, with their zest in baking, their juice to prevent the oxidation of fruit, in dressings, in desserts or as flavouring for chicken.

Here are some great recipe ideas (from two of my favourite chefs Ina Garten and Jamie Oliver) for using lemons:

Ina Garten's (Barefoot Contessa) Lemon Bars:


For the crust:
- 1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups flour
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
For the filling:
- 6 extra-large eggs at room temperature
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest (4 to 6 lemons)
- 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 cup flour
- Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
- For the crust, cream the butter and sugar until light in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Combine the flour and salt and, with the mixer on low, add to the butter until just mixed. Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and gather into a ball. Flatten the dough with floured hands and press it into a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking sheet, building up a 1/2-inch edge on all sides. Chill.
- Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on
- For the filling, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the filling is set. Let cool to room temperature.
- Cut into triangles and dust with confectioners' sugar.

Jamie Oliver's Grilled Asparagus with Olive Oil, Lemon and Parmesan

Ingredients: Serves 4 
- 800g of asparagus (2 big handfuls)
- Good squeeze lemon juice
- 3x lemon juice in olive oil
- pinch of sea salt and cracked black pepper 
- shaved Parmesan

- You will need to wash 2 big handfuls or 800g of whichever kind of asparagus you’re using, with their woody ends snipped off.
-  Heat a large griddle pan and dry-griddle the asparagus spears on both sides until nicely marked. 
- As soon as they're ready, put them on to four plates and dress with a good squeeze lemon juce and three times as much olive oil
- Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, then take a block of Parmesan to the table and either grate or shave some over the asparagus wtih a speed peeler.

photo credit: & google images

1 comment:

  1. i made the asparagus tonight for dinner - so delish! we poured the lemon juice and olive oil into the pan with the asparagus for the last minute or so of searing and it worked well. big hit!