Preserved lemons

Lemons preserved in salt: a recipe from Morocco, a classic of that cuisine, and later assimilated by French cookery which made it famous worldwide. Lemons preserved in salt in this way, after a month, become really delightful: the preservation method makes the pulp and lemon zest sweeter rather than sour, making these lemons excellent for various types of cooking, either baking or steaming, with either fish or chicken, turkey and other meats, and is also great for making desserts, or dressings, to flavour salads and so on. So, you will always have on hand a delicious aroma with which to flavour your food. Let’s have a look at our chef’s recipe for preserved lemons together.


  • lemon
  • whole cooking salt
15 minutes Total time
Serves 10 persons
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This recipe needs very little other than a lot of patience. After just one month, these fabulous lemons can be eaten as an accompaniment to your favourite dishes. Take as many lemons as you want and cut them into four segments, keeping them together at the base. Fill the lemons with the salt, close them up and insert them one by one into a suitable container. Then cover with some more salt and, before sealing, press them down well. Then store in a cool dark place for at least a month.

For this recipe you must use untreated lemons: to recognize them at the supermarket take a bit of time to look at their appearance. Untreated lemons have imperfections and are not very beautiful to look at, nor do they have a regular shape, and are not shiny: this shine comes from a special wax that allows them to be stored for a long time.
Preserving in salt has the main purpose of retaining over time the nutritional values and taste of a particular food: in this case we used it for lemons, but you can also use the method for meat, fish or dairy products, to keep foodstuffs over time, ranging from a few days to a few years. Salting came from the Chinese and the Egyptians, and is carried out in two different ways: either by rubbing salt on the surface of the food, or distributing the product between layers of salt. This process blocks all harmful microorganisms but obviously increases the quantity of sodium in the treated food.

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