It’s lemon season and hopefully you either have a lemon tree at home or a friend with an over producing tree. Lemon juice has around 5% citric acid giving lemons a sour taste which is popular in both sweet and savoury cooking.
With both the juice and rind eatable and usable, there are many options for what you can do with your abundance of lemons. So get outside to the tree with your grandchildren (they will LOVE collecting and picking lemons) and try some of our favourite tips for getting the most out of your lemons.
• Use slices of lemon as a garnish or addition to pancakes, fish, salads or any meat dish
• Slice lemons in circles and put on baking paper, add a fish fillet and layer more circles on top and close before baking. Watch for steam when you open. Delicious
• A small squeeze of lemon can stop apples, bananas and avocadoes from going brown – this is a great idea if grandchildren don’t like their fruit salad going brown.
• If you have surplus lemon juice freeze it in ice cubes and use for drinks or freeze slices in a sealed container (whole lemons don’t freeze quite as well)
Add to your favourite hot or cold drink
• Of course you can add a slice to your favourite drink – a gin and tonic or my favourite – soda stream with a slice of lemon.
• Lemon rind can been grated and used in cooking and baking – think adding to rice for a tangy flavour, hummus or within lemon meringue pie, or lemon cake – try our recipe here. Yum! If you’re really in to lemon you can also make a lemon syrup or lemon curd
• Lemons can also be used as an environmentally friendly and non-toxic cleaner. Mix 1 lemon cut in half with 1/2 cup vinegar, 4 tbsp baking soda and 2 litres of hot water. Use to wipe surfaces at home and the lemon scent is much nicer than some products on the shelves.
• If you are particularly clever lemons can be made in to a marmalade (please let us know if you do this! We’d love to hear if you have a recipe and any tips on making this!)
• Add a slice of lemon with honey (and sliced ginger if you have it) for a warming cup of tea• Use ½ a lemon to clean stains from a stainless-steel sink
Lemon makes a great non toxic cleaner
• Mix the juice of 1 lemon and 2 cups of water and add to a clean spray bottle to make your own pesticide
• And the classic – if you have lemons, make lemonade!
• To get the most out of your lemons, turn them on their side and roll along the bench, this gets the lemon juice moving making the lemon much juicer when you cut it!
• The leaves of lemon trees have also been known to make tea and used in preparing food
• Put left over halves in a cup of water (or enough that they’re covered) and microwave for a few minutes then wipe out the microwave. The steam helps remove baked on dirt easily!
Happy lemon season – and please let us know if you like to do anything else with this versatile fruit. Do you have your own tree or do you go to the market or ask a friend to use their tree?