My neighbor has a fruit tree in the back yard and thru the course of the last few months we determined they were lemons. I know that sounds silly, the spherical objects were green and many are the size of a grapefruit. Over time they turned yellow which gave them away as lemons. I gathered about 25 of them and started on a quest to gather recipes to use them. I also received several at Thanksgiving from an old neighbor so I used about 30.
Since February of 2013 I have been trying to be a bit more organic and natural. I have been cleaning with vinegar and lemon juice (add these to baking soda and you can clean just about anything). Since my husband hates the smell of vinegar I use lemon juice when possible but it’s expensive in comparison. These lemons were an absolute blessing.
I found many ideas for them on the web and wanted to share them in this entry. If this is your first experience with lemons this is a great blog entry on what you may need to make some or all of the recipes below.
I started by cutting the lemons in half and juicing them with a hand citrus juicer. I have a Kitchen Aid Citrus Juicer. I purchased it from Target for 15.99 but used my red card for an additional 5% off. I should have started by zesting or peeling them but hind sight is 20/20. In juicing them I filled a quart mason jar. I saved the pulp from them as well and have about 1 and 1/3 quart of pulp that I will further strain for more juice.
I took each of the peels that were left and placed them in a gallon glass pickle jar and put them in the fridge until I was able to work with them.
After zesting and peeling the lemons you have a white pith left, many recipes say to discard it however I am trying to not waste these days. I used the remaining pith to make the all-purpose cleaner.
Tip: Wear gloves latex, nitrile or otherwise my hands are raw from two afternoons of playing with this acidic monsters.
- All-Purpose Cleaner + Additional Beauty recipes
- Honey Candied Lemon Peels
- Lemon Pepper Seasoning (I also used this same procedure to save my zest without pepper, for cooking and baking in the future.)
- Lemon Extract and Thyme Lemonade
- Lemon Sugar or Lemon Splenda for Diabetics
I am still searching for a great sugar scrub recipe and a delicious lemon bar recipe. I will share them with you when I find the perfect ones. When life gives you lemons, make stuff!
Happy days ahead.