Pickled lemons, like ginger or lemongrass, infuse food with hard to replicate flavor. The most famous are Preserved Lemons, often partnered with olives in southern Mediterranean tagines. Preserved lemons need patience. Packed fresh in salt, lemons sit for a month-long cure before releasing juices enough to self-submerge in a salty-sour brine.
But I like another, equally distinctive and faster way to HOLD lemons. These lemon pickles call on my favorite Zuni brine, which I use to put up pumpkin and apples, too. An additional blanching step in preparing lemons, pulls out the pith’s bitterness before I submerge the fruit in brine. These brine-pickled lemons aren’t as scrappy or self-reliant as their salt-packed cousins, but they make for a shockingly delicious, versatile condiment. Below, pickled lemon plays with parchment-packaged shrimp. Click here to read more »
“The Pickle Shelf” is a series about our favorite, and often unusual, pickles, and ways to use them to unequalled effect. We vary not only the ingredients we pickle (see herbs, squash, watermelon rinds, stems, tomatoes) but how we make our brines, too.
Like in our brine for Pickled Chickpeas, here we cut the traditional vinegar with less acidic leftover white wine.
Pickled garlic cloves keep the kick of raw garlic but mellow enough in their brine to snack on whole. Here, we use some as a warm dressing for bitter greens and to mimic sauerkraut in a relish for hot dogs. Click here to read more »
Peels make good pickles. In this case, cucumbers employed for cold summer soup, leave us a pile of peels that call for a quick “put up.” Taking seasoning cues from kimchi, a traditionally fermented Korean pickle, we pair these peels with salt, garlic, rice vinegar, chili flake, and scallion. They yield quickly to the flavors, but because peels contain little water to release, they remain crisp and slaw-like, even for days. We thought to pile them on top of vermicelli noodles, but snacked on them straight from the container, instead. Click here to read more »