Friday, August 10, 2012

When You've Got Lemons...

Freeze them for later! Why didn't I think of this before? Duh. It could have saved me from something I really hate to do...throw out food. It pains me. And it doesn't happen often. Even though it disobeys almost every law of foodservice, I'm known for saying, "If it smells okay and isn't slimy, I'll eat it." (Please follow that advice at your own risk.) But I have to admit, which also pains me, that I have thrown away many a lemon or lime because they go bad before I can figure out what the heck to do with them. Until now!

Freezing lemons (or limes) is so easy. They don't require any special treatment.
  1. Slice off the ends.
  2. Slice the lemon in half lengthwise.
  3. Slice through each half creating 1/4 inch slices.
  4. Lay in a single layer in a freezer zip-top bag. Squeeze as much air out as you can before sealing.
  5. Freeze and pull out a lemon slice whenever you need it.
If you're saying "duh, Liz," I don't blame you. But if you feel enlightened too, then great! I'm pumped! I love to add these frozen lemons to water, sparkling water, wine spritzers and sangria. They're like a flavored ice cube. Thaw some first and you'll find how handy they are to have around for cooking, making salad dressing and squeezing onto salads too. Man--sometimes the simplest things are really great.

You can use your frozen lemon slices in one of my favorite summer beverages too. It's a lower calorie alcoholic indulgence that's super refreshing.

Citrus Wine Spritzer
  • 4 ounces red or white wine (I prefer shiraz or chardonnay)
  • 4 ounces sparkling water (use plain or experiment with different flavors. Lemon-lime is nice in chardonnay and raspberry is nice in shiraz.)
  • A few ice cubes
  • 1 lemon slice, squeezed
  • 1 lime slice, squeezed
This spritzer contains about 100 calories per 8-ounce serving (that's versus a 4-ounce serving if it's just wine).