Why does that well-known saying give the lemon and its metaphorical representations a bad wrap? We can’t really think of anything bad about lemons. They’re delicious! You know that we love our citrus, so how can we see the ‘glass half empty’ in them? They are really a half full glass of fabulousness. Sweet fabulousness. This past weekend, we were given nothing but lovely lemons–literally and figuratively. All we could do was go with the flow and make the best out of the situations at hand. Although Easter has come and gone, we’d like to go back and share with you what went down.
A couple of weeks ago, we were asked to cook for a baby christening on Easter Sunday for a party of 50. A good lemon placed right in our hands, so we made the best of it! Fifty people is a large crowd. We’ve cooked for a graduation party of about 40, so we knew what was on the horizon. It would mean a full week of menu prep and shopping and at least 15 hours of cooking, so the heat was on. On Friday, we stuffed our respective fridges, shelves and cabinets with food. Counters were covered with chafing dishes and aluminum storage tins. Pans sizzled, pots boiled and roasting trays baked in ovens for hours on Saturday night. We only had time for a mini nap of less than an hour before we were back up on Sunday morning to finish off the last dishes. It was really a feat, but when it was all over, it was worth it. The menu included pecan and brown sugar crusted ham, baked herbed salmon, mashed sweet potatoes with maple pecans, macaroni and cheese, lemon and garlic green beans and corn bread. Although we were not able to capture the best pictures, here’s an idea of the spread:
Needless to say, after the long, long hours spent on one Easter lunch, surely we wouldn’t have the energy to move forth with our own Easter dinner? Well, if you know us, we like to do the most. That means we forge ahead! Although we hadn’t slept and had barely nourished ourselves, we felt as though Easter dinner is a hard one to ignore. Not only do we enjoy having people over, but we have a lot of friends who are without family here in Los Angeles. Why not congregate for food and fun with friends instead of Subway and soda with the television? And so, riding on what must’ve been our fourth wind, we cooked up a couple of dishes including lemon rosemary chicken and potatoes, roast chicken farfalle pasta, a rum and coke basted ham (recipe courtesy of Noble Pig), fried corn, cornbread, apple tart and Meyer lemon tart. Yes, here’s where the acting of life handing over literal lemons appears again, but look at a couple more pictures first before we discuss:
There were also glazed carrots, mashed potatoes, salad, brownies, rolls and many bottles of wine and other beverages, which was all so kindly supplied by our guests. It was literally a feast of massive proportions. One to lull you to sleep when it’s all said and done. So now that we’ve shown you all of the above, let’s get back to the lemons shall we?
We’ve seen Meyer lemon this and Meyer lemon that all over the foodie blogosphere. Each and every time we see it, we are determined to give them a try. A sweet lemon is a cool thing, especially if you’ve never had one. Now normally, Meyer lemons can run around $3 a pound at the average market. That is fairly expensive when you think about it. When we came across Meyers for $1 a pound, it was a gold mine find! We could finally make something that’s been on our list for a while now-the Meyer lemon tart. It was good, although the sweet lemons obviously take away from the typical tart flavor of a lemon tart. It’s a completely different taste that, honestly, did not totally float our boats in this instance. We’ve come to the conclusion that a sour lemon tart is more up our alley, but this was a nice change. Topped with a bit of fresh raspberry whipped cream, it was a nice Easter dessert to end the evening.
Meyer Lemon Tart – Serves 10 to 12
1 sweet pastry tart shell, prebaked and cooled
3/4 cup sugar
Zest of 2 Meyer lemons
Juice of 4 Meyer lemons
1/2 cup heavy cream
1. Whisk eggs, zest, cream and sugar until combined.
2. Add lemon juice and continue whisking until smooth.
3. Place prebaked tart shell on a baking sheet and pour in lemon filling. Carefully slide into a preheated oven at 350 degrees and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until filling has just set.
Click HERE for printable recipe.