Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Lemons. Lots of them.

by Nancy Malone


It’s safe to say that working full-time at home is and isn’t what I thought it would be. As I suspected, I think about food and eating quite a lot – what other distractions are there? But I also thought I would have more time to cook and, in truth, I don’t. 

My family’s house is located adjacent to a popular walking path that connects one street to another. A day or so before we were ordered to shelter-in-place, it crossed my mind that I should harvest some of our bounty of Meyer lemons and leave them near the path to share with passersby. Well, I didn’t get to that and, at this point, I don’t think anyone would take them. Instead, we’ve spent the last two weeks putting lemons in everything – anything that’s not too time consuming. Vegan “Caesar” dressing. Tahini sauce. Lemon broccoli. Lemony quinoa salad. Lemon in still water, lemon in sparkling water. With a spark of inspiration and energy, my husband even made marmalade. One thing we haven’t made is lemonade; it just seems a bit trite at the moment.

“Pantry” recipes are all over the media right now, and here is one of my lemony favorites that we doubled the other day:

Chickpeas in Olive Oil and Lemon
From The Illustrated Quick Cook

3 Tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
14 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (it’s tastier with home cooked if you have them)
Juice of ½ lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
Handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Step 1: Heat the oil in a sauté pan, add the garlic and chickpeas, and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice, zest and parsley, then cook over medium heat of an additional 2 minutes.

Step 2: Remove from heat and season. Serve hot, warm or cold with a splash of olive oil.

Next up: I am thinking of trying a recipe for a Meyer lemon shrub. Maybe with rosemary, which also resides in great bounty just outside my door.