Q: What do you do when life gives you a lemon (tree)?

A: Make lemon blueberry scones, lemon meringue pies and sushi!

So in addition to my partner in crime (and Colin Kaeppernick), a giant lemon tree welcomed me to CA last weekend. I giant lemon tree filled with lemons. One of the weekend’s top missions was to make use of said lemons.

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As far as I’m concerned, mission accomplished!

Both the scone and pie recipes that we followed were actually really simple. (Note: not so simple that we didn’t have a fair amount of damage control to keep things interesting :-/) An added bonus is that the scones are really a basic recipe that can be flavored with essentially whatever you have an excess of  rotting in your pantry sprouting in your back yard. So, for all of those lemons and oranges and grapefruits and plums ripening on the trees in your back yards…wait….what? you don’t have all of these growing in your back yard? they aren’t right there next to the rose bushes? My god…CK and fresh fruit…some people really do get all the breaks!! Anyway… here are two awesome recipes that will use at least a few of whichever are in season  are on sale at the grocery store 🙂

 

Scones (lemon blueberry)

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Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, frozen
1/2 cup raisins (or dried currants) 
1/2 cup sour cream (we didn’t have this 😦 I substituted an extra egg for moisture and it worked out just fine :)
1 large egg

Protocol:

  1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Grate butter into flour mixture on the large holes of a box grater (thinly shaving with a large, sharp knife also works…and is more exciting); use your fingers to work in butter (mixture should resemble coarse meal), then stir in raisins.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk sour cream and egg until smooth (or no SC and 2 eggs…see above).
  4. Using a fork, stir sour cream mixture into flour mixture until large dough clumps form. Use your hands to press the dough against the bowl into a ball. (The dough will be sticky in places, and there may not seem to be enough liquid at first, but as you press, the dough will come together.)
  5. Place on a lightly floured surface and pat into a 7- to 8-inch circle about 3/4-inch thick. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tsp. of sugar. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 triangles; place on a cookie sheet (preferably lined with parchment paper), about 1 inch apart. Bake until golden, about 15 to 17 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and serve warm or at room temperature with coffee 😉

*Note: These can be supplemented with whatever fruits, extracts, spices you’d like. We used zest + juice from 1 full lemon and a handful of fresh blueberries (The recipe actually suggests using dried fruit, which I think this is bull $hit silly. Fresh fruit add moisture, their texture is nicer and their flavor is great. IMHO.) Cranberry orange and cinnamon raisin were also suggested. I would like to try some savory ones too, maybe some with dill or sage or cloves…

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Lemon Meringue Pie

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Ingredients:

1 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups water
2 lemons, juiced and finely zested 
2 tablespoons butter
4 egg yolks, beaten
1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
4 egg whites
6 tablespoons white sugar

Protocol:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. To Make Lemon Filling: In a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 cup sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in water, lemon juice and lemon zest. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture comes to a boil. Stir in butter. Place egg yolks in a small bowl and gradually whisk in 1/2 cup of hot sugar mixture. Whisk egg yolk mixture back into remaining sugar mixture. Bring to a boil and continue to cook while stirring constantly until thick. Remove from heat. Pour filling into baked pastry shell.
  3. To Make Meringue: In a large glass or metal bowl, whip egg whites until foamy. Add sugar gradually, and continue to whip until stiff peaks form. Spread meringue over pie, sealing the edges at the crust. (DO NOT scale up. Regardless of the number of pies you’re making whip the meringue 4 egg whites — or one pie — at a time. This advise may or may not come from personal experience…
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  4. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes, or until meringue is golden brown. Cool and serve with coffee 🙂

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Sushi Fish

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Ingredients:

Sashimi grade fish (1/3 lb tuna and 1/3 lb salmon)
2 cups sushi rice
3 cups water
1/2 cup Rice vinegar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp salt
garnishes to taste (sliced avocado, cucumber, radish, carrot…bleh…
soy sauce and Chipotle mayo (mayo + Sriracha)
lemon 🙂

Protocol:

  1. Rinse the rice in a strainer or colander until the water runs clear. Combine with water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Rice should be tender and water should be absorbed. Cool until cool enough to handle.
  2. In a small saucepan, combine the rice vinegar, oil, sugar and salt. Cook over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Cool, then stir into the cooked rice. When you pour this in to the rice it will seem very wet. Keep stirring and the rice will dry as it cools.
  3. Aliquot rice into bite-sized clumps
  4. Layer garnishes on top of rice
  5. Slice fish and layer on top of rice + garnishes
  6. Further garnish fish to taste

*Note: eating raw fish can be dangerous and can make you painfully, violently and embarrassingly ill. ONLY use fresh sashimi grade fish and consume in moderation.

 

 

 

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