Posts tagged lemon bars

Zing

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

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Three lemons and a recipe

At the risk of sounding like a Hallmark card, or not quite cynical enough for my generation, I need to take a moment to gush.

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A friend dropped by the other day with a little something:  Three lemons and a recipe. They were in a paper sack, tied with a white satiny bow.

Beauty, simply presented. A thoughtful gift. An appetizing gesture.

Does she know that lemon bars ascended to my Dessert Top 5 of 2008? That my girls would be just as excited about the bow as I would be about the citrus?

Does she know that lemons have an energizing presence on my countertop? That they get me almost giddy with the thought of possibility?

Maybe not, but in a gift of lemons, she probably knew this much: Scent, color, form, promise. It’s all there in a lemon.

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