Preserved Lemons


by Al Brown

Popular in middle eastern cooking preserving lemons brings out the natural sweetness of the skin, perfect with seafoods, meat dishes, tagines and grilled vegetables.

Prep Time: 20 minutes


  • Lots of lemons (thin skinned)
  • Flaky sea salt

1. Wash the lemons to remove possible pesticides or chemicals. 2. With a sharp knife make 4 cuts down the length at quarter intervals, leaving the ends intact. The cuts should go right through, so if you depress both ends it opens like a lantern. 3. Take a clean jar and sprinkle about 2T of sea salt in the bottom. 4. Over a bowl to catch any juice slightly squeeze each lemon to open the cuts. Force around 1/2T sea salt into each cut. Place lemons in the jar, sprinkling a few tablespoons of salt as you go. 5. Pack them tightly to the top, add another sprinkle of salt, fill to the top with lemon juice and screw on the lid. 6. Keep an eye on them over the first few days. if they're not completely submerged in liquid top up with fresh lemon juice. 7. Jars can be kept at room temperature. They should be ready in 2-3 weeks, and will keep unopened for up to a year. 8. To Use: Remove a lemon, discard pith and flesh, lightly wash the skin, chop and use as you wish.