A Cartoonist’s Diary

Vanessa Davis: Day Four

Trevor went on a neighborhood walk and saw that someone put out a big box of beautiful, smelly yellow backyard lemons.

I have been passionately devoted to finding ways to use them all up before they go bad. So far I’ve only made two things:

1. Preserved Lemons

I’ve never really made, used, or eaten these before but they sound cool. They’re like lemon-salt bombs that you can chop up and put into pastas, salads, soups, or even cocktails.

I am really eager to use them in Spicy Crab Spaghettini with Preserved Lemon.

I got the recipe from Epicurious, the Gourmet recipe for Preserved Meyer Lemons. Basically, you take 10 to 12 lemons. Blanch 6 of them in boiling water for 5 minutes. When they cool down, cut them into wedges. Toss them in a bowl with 2/3 cup salt, then stuff them into an old tomato sauce jar. Then juice the remaining lemons, and pour the juice in. Let sit on counter for 5 days, shaking once a day. Add 1/4 cup olive oil (I actually couldn’t do this, there wasn’t room), and put in the fridge.

2. I also made homemade Ginger Ale, which I’ve made once before.

Homemade ginger ale is so good, and so easy. It’s also delicious with bourbon. It’s also just so cool! Yesterday it was flat, today it’s fizzy!

This recipe is adapted from the one at Crumpets and Cakes:

3/4 cup sugar (You can do anywhere between 1/2 and 1 cup. I thought 1c. was a little sweet.)
1 ½-2 tbsp grated ginger
1 lemon’s juice (Or two, whatever. You can also add lemon zest.)
¼ tsp baker’s yeast
Cold water

Add sugar and yeast to a 2L plastic bottle or large glass jar. Mix ginger with lemon juice and add it. Fill half with cold water and shake to mix. Fill the rest up, leaving at least an inch at top. Leave in the sun for two days, then transfer to refrigerator, to stop fermentation. Refrigerate overnight. Strain into new bottle and guzzle that stuff.

I still have a lot of lemons, with which I will probably make limoncello. Making limoncello is pretty straightforward, but I found this recipe, which I will link to here for your entertainment.

The other recipe I discovered this week, which has nothing to do with lemons, is very dangerous. I’m sorry to say I have no photos of my own, because when it was time to eat it, I would think of nothing else but eating it. No time for a picture. This is the most insanely delicious condiment I’ve ever had in my life. I’ve eaten it on roast chicken, a fried egg, brown rice, noodles, and lentils. I would eat it on anything.
Here is Francis Lam’s picture of his Ginger Scallion Sauce:

This recipe takes five minutes. Here’s my shorter version but Francis’s might be more entertaining. He’s so funny AND he introduced me to this recipe, SWOOON!!

2 ounces ginger, peeled and cut into 1” chunks
1 1/2 bunches (about 6 oz) whole scallions, cut into 1” lengths
3/4-1 cup peanut oil

Chop ginger in food processor until it’s the size of tiny bbs. Then add scallions and chop those too until they’re around the same size. Then scrape it all into a big stockpot. Salt it like crazy. Francis says, "Taste it, it should be almost too salty to seem palatable." Heat your oil in a small pan until it just starts to smoke. Pour it into the stockpot, over the salty ginger-scallion mix. MMMMM. Let cool, put it in a jar, and keep it in the fridge. Put it on everything.

Vanessa Davis is the creator of Make Me a Woman and Spaniel Rage.