from jam to Jerusalem; preserving to Ottolenghi

I have spent most of the day today researching recipes for an upcoming preserving course that I am leading at Tideswell School of Food.  I have had the ideas mulling round in my head for the last couple of months since my neighbour and I ran the stall at Tideswell Food Festival, but it was only today that I sat down and thought about what I might do.

It’s troubling me greatly to be running this course, as I want to start a similar passion to my own for people, but it is proving difficult to squeeze (every pun intended) as many different techniques as possible into a 3 1/2 hour session in the hope that people will leave inspired enough to start their own research.

In the middle of all this arrived my new microwave, bought by Mum and Dad for my birthday…and thus hatched a plan.  A microwave marmalade demonstration.

And as these things do, another plan hatched in my mind at the same time…a breadmaker jam demonstration!

So now, I have 9 recipes to get through in 3 1/2 hours.  Easy!  Might have to have a little bit of a cull!

Anyway.  The recipe I have created this afternoon, was inspired by my current favourite cookbook, Jerusalem, by Yottam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi.  I took his recipes for preserved lemons and pickled lemons, kind of combined them, and added my own twist.

My Nan called in the middle of it all, and I was inspired to do a Blue Peter style demo on the course, so I trotted off to the supermarket to get the ingredients to start off my own preserved limes so that they would be ready for people on the course to try.

Preserved Limes – makes 1 750ml jar

  • 6 limes
  • 40g coarse sea salt
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • few small sprigs rosemary
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • juice of 6 limes (haven’t done this bit yet, so haven’t worked out exactly how much to use)
  • olive oil to cover
  1. Mix the chilli flakes, smoked paprika rosemary and sea salt in a bowl.
  2. Sterilise the jar that the limes are going in to with boiling water.  After you have broken the cheap jar you bought, mopped the floor, dried the inside of all three draws and given everything a good clean, re-sterilise a Kilner jar this time in the sink so that when it breaks it doesn’t need loads of clearing up.  Put the lid in a container and pour on more boiling water.  Leave for 5 minutes.
  3. Cut most of the way through each of the limes in a cross pattern down towards the ‘spider’. Put a spoonful of salt mixture into the cross of each lime, and pack into the jar.
  4. Leave to stagnate for one week.

This is where I have got up to so far, and is the stage shown in the picture that I am hoping to have the technological savvy to be able to add to this.

  1. After 1 week, press the limes down, add the crushed garlic, pour over lime juice until the limes are all covered, and seal with a layer of olive oil.
  2. Leave for at least a further 4 weeks.

This gives me around 5 weeks to work out what I am actually going to do with preserved limes, apart from show them to people on my course!

I will add further pictures as the preserving progresses. I will even try to photograph them a bit more artistically.

 

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