Preserved Lemons for a taste of North Africa

One of my favorite local bakeries, Alon’s, makes one of my all-time¬†favorite sandwiches – the Tunisian Spicy Tuna. It is a combination of quality canned tuna, potato, hard-boiled egg, capers, harissa sauce and, an unusual ingredient, preserved lemon. If you have had Moroccan or North African cuisine, you probably have run into preserved lemons before. You’ll find it as an ingredient in tangines and stews. It is essentially a salty, lemon pickle.¬†

Preserved lemons are whole lemons, sliced open, put into jars, then covered in salt and lemon juice to cure. I’ve seen jars of preserved lemons in gourmet food shops and catalogs. They are laughably expensive, considering how easy they are to make at home.

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