You guys: This recipe is amazing. I don’t know where you are on the spectrum of appreciating spicy Indian food but I strongly suggest you try this. It’s delicious. It’s one of those things I think about all day long until it’s time for dinner and I can finally make myself some.
It was actually my friend, Carrien’s idea. She heard about lemon week and told me that in India they make something called “pickle” with lime rinds. It’s not like what we think of like a jar of pickles but more of a relish or condiment that you put with rice. It sounded interesting so Carrien did some research and came up with this recipe which is loosely based on this recipe.
So here goes:
• 2 serrano peppers
• 1 habanero pepper
• 12 lemons
• 1 inch section of fresh ginger, chopped
• 10 chopped garlic cloves (keeps the vampires away)
• 2 cups distilled white vinegar
• 1 tsp turmeric
• 1 tbs salt
• 2 tbs mustard seed
• 1 tbs coriander
• 1 tsp whole cumin
• 5 tbs vegetable oil
• 6 small canning jars (or the equivalent)
1. Heat 3 tbs of oil in a large frying pan until hot.
2. Sauté lemons, turning them over until their skins are golden brown. Do you like our fancy way of dealing with the spitting hot oil? That was my fault. I washed the lemons and then plopped them into the oil without drying them first. Water and oil can make a spitting hot mess. FYI.
3. Dry the lemons and cut them in half with a knife. Then cut them into smaller slices with a handy dandy pair of kitchen scissors (or use a knife if you happen to have a sharp one). Save the juice.
4. Chop your peppers, ginger and garlic (gloves are super smart when chopping spicy peppers.)
5. Put 2 tbs of oil into a blender or food processor, add chopped peppers, garlic and ginger. Blend to a paste.
6. At the stove using the same oil you sautéed the lemons in, add mustard, coriander and cumin. Heat the seeds until they pop open.
7. Add the paste, stir and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off heat.
8. Add turmeric, lemon pieces, lemon juice and vinegar and stir until thoroughly mixed.
9. Spoon lemon slices into jars, and pour remaining fluid over the lemons ensuring they are just covered.
10. Stir with a chopstick or knife to remove any air bubbles and seal jars.
Aren’t they pretty? They smell divine. We didn’t pressure can these so I’m just keeping them in the refrigerator but I think you could store them in the pantry since they are technically preserves.
Serve over rice or potatoes or sweet potatoes or yams or chicken or fish…pretty much this would taste good on anything. It’s spicy though so you might want to go slow. Think of it as a condiment and dip something into it! Then come back here and tell me how delicious it is!