Sunday, February 10, 2013

When Life Gives You Lemons......

Make lemonade. Or lemon bread.  Or lemoncello.  Or lemon cake.  You get the idea.  And this is exactly what I did this weekend.  Its citrus season here in the Mediterranean.  Here in Albania you don't have to look far to see trees filled with the bright yellows and oranges of ripe citrus fruits.  On dreary gray days like the ones we have been experiencing as of late, the citrus are the few spots of color.

We are fortunate to have three citrus trees of our own growing in our small yard.  Our two mandarin and one lemon trees produce a fair amount of fruit.  Because everyone in the house loves them so, we end up supplementing our mandarins with ones from our local markets but our single lemon tree produces just enough of a crop to fulfill my lemon needs.  Last week I went out and picked all of the ripe fruit and had been slowing cooking my way through the pile.  A second round of preserved lemons are curing and a new batch of lemoncello is steeping in the pantry. I had a few more lemons to deal with and then we got gifted with a whole lot more!  While we have a few citrus trees, many of our Embassy families have yards that are overflowing with them.  One couple, who are departing the country soon, gifted us with a whole lot of lemons.  In fact, there are so many lemons that I've been scrambling to find good uses for all of them.

I've spent my Sunday toiling away with all things lemon.  In addition to the a fore mentioned lemon items I've made lemon bread, lemon-thyme bundt cakes, and I have a lemon spiked chicken picatta planned for tomorrow night's dinner.  I had planned to make a lemon curd, for a lemon curd ice cream, but my last four eggs are reserved for tonight's dinner of avgolemono, a Greek lemon and rice soup.  (I'm also out of flour, butter and sugar too!).  Alas, after all of this cooking, not only am I tired but I fear that tonight I'll be dreaming about I should do with my remaining two dozen lemons.  Lemonade anyone?

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