Mallorcan lemons are now in season. | ULTIMA HORA


It’s difficult to imagine any kitchen without lemons. There is no other ingredient that can transform a dish in a single squeeze and lemons bring a little note of summer to the dark winter months. Although available all year, lemons are actually in season right now, so it’s time to expand your citrus repertoire.

Lemon appears in all kinds of cooking, sometimes as the star, sometimes in a small, uncredited cameo. We are lucky enough to have a few big lemon trees in our vegetable garden and every year we have an abundance of lemons to cook with. We always preserve some in salt to use throughout the year and they make nice culinary gifts for our guests. Known in Morocco as l’hamd marakad (sleeping lemons), many Middle Eastern recipes call for preserved lemons but they are also the perfect condiment for all types of sauces, vinaigrettes and salad dressings. The flavour is soft yet intensely lemony, with none of the nose-tickling bright high notes of the fresh lemon. Preserving lemons is also very easy to do at home, although it does take at least three to four weeks before they are ready to use.

Choose lemons that are brightly coloured and heavy for their size with a thin, undamaged skin. Lemons contain excellent vitamin c, lots of sharp, acidic juice, and also fragrant oil that’s found in the zest.

Lemon chicken with Marjoram and artichokes
Related news

Lemon chicken with Marjoram and artichokes

Serves: 4

4 chicken legs cut in into drumsticks & thighs
Juice of 2 lemons
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp sherry vinegar
2 tbsp chopped marjoram
2 large globe artichokes (cooked and quartered)
2 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
100ml white wine
250ml chicken stock
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp chopped parsley

  • 1 Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan.
  • 2 Dust the chicken very lightly with flour and seasoning. Cook over a high heat for a few minutes, until a golden crust has formed.
  • 3 Lower the heat and add the onions, garlic, paprika and bay leaf. Cook for 3-4 minutes without colour until soft.
  • 4 Add the white wine and sherry vinegar to the pan, allowing the wine to bubble and reduce for a minute or two.
  • 5 Add the chicken stock, cover the pan with a lid and braise the chicken very gently for about 30 minutes, stirring halfway through.
  • 6 Just before serving, add the cooked artichokes, chopped marjoram and the juice of 2 lemons.
  • 7 Season to taste, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve immediately.

Lemon Polenta & Olive oil cake

Serves 8

200g unsalted butter, (at room temperature), plus extra for greasing
200g sugar
3 large free-range eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
200g ground almonds
100g coarse polenta
4 lemons, juiced
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp gluten-free baking powder

  • 1 Preheat the oven to 160°C/320°F/gas 2½.
  • 2 Grease a 20cm tin, line the bottom and sides with greaseproof paper and grease again.
  • 3 Beat the butter and sugar in a mixer or large bowl until light and creamy.
  • 4 Slowly beat in the eggs, one by one.
  • 5 In another bowl, combine the ground almonds, polenta, lemon zest, lemon juice and baking powder, and then stir this into the cake mix.
  • 6 Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the surface is light brown and the cake is coming away slightly from the sides of the tin.
  • 7 Remove the tin from the oven, leave to cool for 10 minutes, and then turn it out onto a plate. This cake will be quite fragile, so handle carefully as you remove it. Set aside to cool.
  • 8 Serve with a dollop of sweetened crème fraîche or vanilla ice cream.