What Do I Do With … Meyer Lemons?

By Aurelia d'Andrea February 19, 2014 Categories: Farmers' Market Find, What Do I Do with...

Mother Nature never ceases to amaze me. Lemons, at the height of ripeness during the darkness of mid-winter—how wonderful is that? Just when we are most in need of a revitalizing blast of summery color and flavor, the earth provides it, and even throws in a vitamin C boost to help clear out the cold-and-flu cobwebs.

 

 

Of all the lemon varieties out there, my favorite is the Meyer lemon. The plump, shiny, deep-yellow fruit was named after early 20th-century horticulturist Frank N. Meyer, who “discovered” the lemons while on assignment in Asia and ferried a few home to the United States, where they are now grown as a seasonal specialty crop, usually from January until mid-spring.

Meyer lemons have a thin peel and a deliciously floral scent and taste, and they’re thought to be a hybrid of an orange and a lemon. They are less sour and a little juicier than your run-of-the-mill lemon, and their special flavor is particularly suited to sweet preparations. A beloved wintertime elixir is Meyer lemonade sweetened with just a bit of agave nectar or sugar. A tall glassful is fresh and revitalizing, but it can also be simmered over low heat and served in a mug to offer warming comfort and soothe a sore throat.

I try to buy organic whenever possible so I can also use the skin, which I zest and add to a variety of dishes. The aromatic quality of the Meyer lemon peel marries well with baked goods, adding extra depth of flavor to muffins, cakes, and breads. Try adding a teaspoon of fresh or dried zest to your next batch of batter for a fragrant, citrusy boost.

How do you use Meyer lemons? Do you have a favorite recipe to share? If you’re not quite there yet, try these tasty ideas to get started:

Meyer Lemon Bundt Cake

Bulgur and Asparagus Salad

Chilled Pea Soup

 

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Aurelia d’Andrea’s passion for travel is deeply intertwined with her love of food. Whether in Perth, Prague, or Phnom Penh, she always gravitates toward local markets in search of edible treasures, and takes pleasure in recreating tasty travel memories at home in her tiny Parisian kitchen.

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comments

Hello Aurelia, I'm glad that you liked my suggestion. For this recipe, you also can use Meyer Lemon peel after juicing and zesting. This is another way to maximize use of the Meyer Lemon peel before composting. Another approach is to put Meyer Lemon quarters in a beautiful bowl with whole star anise, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves and whole allspice, and any other appealing herbs and spices. Warmly, Letitia Star, healthy living writer and recipe developer

Letitia L. Star - 2014-02-25 20:04:34

Letitia, what a brilliant idea! I'll try this--today!

Aurelia - 2014-02-20 11:04:22

Hello Aurelia, Thanks so much for your insightful and informative blog. I appreciate your insights and cooking suggestions. I share your passion for the Meyer lemon, particularly for its very special scent and taste. My recipe suggestion is for natural home aromatherapy: Cut one Meyer Lemon in quarters or slices. Place in large pot of hot water on the stovetop and add whole star anise, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves and allspice. Gentle simmer on very low heat. This creates a wonderful, warming and uplifting fragrance in your kitchen and home. Warmest regards, Letitia Star, healthy living writer and recipe developer

Letitia L. Star - 2014-02-19 23:28:45