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A lemony zest for autumn


A new collection of recipes based around perhaps the most popular citrus – the Lemon Compendium – is now available from local resident Yasemin Kaner-White.
The book is the result of months of research, tasting and travelling and offers a varied account of all things lemony. It’s not just food – health, beauty and household tips, as well as historical accounts can be found alongside the lemonlicious recipies.
N16 Life readers get FREE POSTAGE if they are order a copy of the Lemon Compendium for £25. Email yasemen@parmuto.com and mention this magazine when ordering. Signed copies also available.

Champagne Limoncello Cocktail
Serves 8
1 lemon wedge,
 cut for rims
8 lemon rind strips
8 tbsp Limoncello
4 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 bottle Champagne, chilled
Sugar the glass rims by rubbing a cut lemon wedge around the rim of each glass, then dip in sugar. Next, roll up the strips of lemon rind and place one into each of the champagne flutes. Add 1 tbsp Limoncello and ½ tsp juice to each glass. Divide champagne evenly among glasses. Serve immediately.

Lemon Sorbet in Lemon Shells
8 large lemons
340g sugar
360ml water

Cut off the top third of the lemons, not the stem end, and reserve for the ‘cap.’ Hollow out each lemon, putting the juice and flesh (not the pips or pith) into a blender. Slice a little off the bottom of each lemon shell, being careful not to cut through to the inside of the lemon. This will make them sit straight when placed on a plate.
Freeze the shells at least 1 hour or overnight. Then fill with sorbet (made as per instructions below) and freeze again.
To make the sorbet, combine the sugar, lemon juice and water in a saucepan, over a medium heat, stir until the sugar has dissolved. Stir the lemon zest. Remove from heat, set aside allowing to cool.
Ice Cream Maker – transfer mixture to ice cream maker, process according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Freezer Method – pour into container, cover and place mixture in the freezer. When it is semi-solid, rack up with a fork and freeze again.
Fill each frozen lemon shell with the sorbet, top off with a lemon cap, freeze again until completely frozen, then serve.
This delicious pudding can be prepared 2–3 days in advance, simply keep covered in a container stored in.

Blueberry & Lemon Ricotta Cake
Gluten free
250g ricotta cheese
140g soft butter
140g ground almonds
140g golden caster sugar
6 medium eggs, separated
1 lemon, zest & juice
75g dried blueberries
25g fine polenta flour
Icing sugar, for dusting
Heat the oven to 180ºC. Grease and line the base of a 23cm diameter spring-form tin. Put the ricotta, butter, almonds, sugar and egg yolks in a large bowl and beat together with a wooden spoon until creamy. Add the lemon zest and juice with the dried blueberries.
Whisk the egg whites in a clean bowl until they peak softly. Fold the polenta into the ricotta mixture, then gently fold in the whisked egg whites. Pour the cake mix into the prepared tin and bake for 35 minutes. The cake is cooked when it is golden and just firm to the touch. Allow it to cool in the tin, then transfer to a serving plate and dust with the icing sugar before serving up.

Sweet Lemon Butter
I love to serve this up to guests on toast the morning after a sleep-over!
125g butter
3 lemons, juice & zest
1 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
Combine butter, lemon juice and sugar in a pan on a high heat until dissolved, stirring for 5 minutes. Beat the eggs well. Tip the hot syrup over the eggs, continuously stirring. Return to heat, cooking for another 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat, add lemon zest… Done! Store in sterilised sealed jars. Refrigerate after opening and enjoy!

Lemon style couscous
I like to eat this with lamb chops, but it accompanies most meats or fish, as well as being a meal on its own perhaps with some grilled haloumi for the vegetarians out there…
Serves 4

Libya’s national dish, traditionally shared and eaten from one large bowl, accompanied by small salad’s, and a host of other snacks surrounding it, for example dolma (rice and mince stuffed bell peppers) however, the dish alone, is certainly satisfying…

½ tsp cinnamon
2 tsp cumin seeds
3 tsp turmeric
2 tsp dried chilli flakes
90ml olive oil
4 large cloves garlic
2 large onions, sliced
600g lamb leg meat,
2 potatoes, cubed
2 tsp salt
880ml boiling water
2 tbsp tomato paste
230g cooked chickpeas
1 lemon, juice & zest
400g couscous
Pinch salt
2 lemons, wedges

Begin by pounding together the spices in a mortar and pestle, set aside. Heat 50ml olive oil in a large frying pan, add the onions and meat, cook until the onions start to caramelise, throw in the potato and 1 tsp salt, stir until golden. Transfer to a casserole dish, de-glaze the pan by pouring 480ml water into the frying pan, collecting all the pan juices, pour into the casserole dish. Now add the spices and tomato paste, stir well, cooking until potatoes are soft and then add the chickpeas, lemon juice and zest.
Next cook the couscous, place in a bowl with 400ml boiling water, 40ml olive oil and 1 tsp salt, stir and cover with cling film, leave for 10 minutes. When the couscous is ready, place on a serving plate topped off with the lamb mixture, serve with lemon wedges.
Watermelon, Lemon & Rosemary Slurp
500ml water
185g caster sugar
2 sprigs rosemary stripped and chopped
18 lemons, juice only
1 medium watermelon, de-seeded and cubed
8 cups ice cubes
Over a high heat bring the water and sugar to a boil in a saucepan. Stir in the rosemary, and set aside to steep for 1 hour. Place the lemon juice with the watermelon in a blender.
Strain the rosemary syrup through a mesh strainer into the blender, puree until smooth. Refrigerate until very cold, give it a good stir before serving over ice.