This is one of my favorite times of year in the Southwest. Not only is our little “mountain” turning a rich shade of green not often seen here in the desert, we’re also enjoying a bountiful influx of citrus, so that throughout my house are strategically placed bowls of varying shades and cross-shades of oranges and yellows.

Last night, My husband hefted home from work (where our citrus trees reside) a garbage-bag full – one of those bags that stretches – of outsized lemons, navel oranges and tangelos, and some state-fair-ready ruby red grapefruit. I’ve never seen grapefruit so huge, or tasted grapefruit so rich with juice.

I’ve already prepped some dough for tonight’s lemon-herb focaccia, and I have all sorts of other plans for the lemons that just keep on coming. Lemons are one of my favorite ingredients to work with – they have such a brightening, punchy power.

Here’s what I’ll be up to in the coming weeks:

  • Squeezing the juice for everything from couscous to vinaigrette

  • Zesting like crazy – these lemons are unwaxed, making the perfect zesting specimens

  • Baking Alice Medrich’s lemon bars, a yearly ritual

  • Slicing lemons to place atop broiled fish or to class up a simple glass of water



3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    My mouth is watering at the thought of those grapefruits. I used to eat them often when I lived in Texas, but I have guilt issues about buying fruits imported from Florida here in France.

    Have you thought about making marmalade or confit? That’s what I’d do if faced with a surplus of lemons.

  2. 2

    trisha said,

    Camille: I should do a marmalade, shouldn’t I? Or maybe some lemon curd…. I’ve not made fruit confit before, but that sounds like a fun challenge. And I almost forgot: I need to replenish my stock of preserved lemons, so I’ll have to be sure to reserve a few for that. Don’t you love possibilities?

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