When life gives you lemons…

First, if you have a second, please vote for my quinoa recipe here.  I really want to have the opportunity to cook at the Texas State Fair. I think it would be so exciting! Now, back to business.

Lemons are one of my favorite fruits. They were the highlight of so many of my summertime meals, from lemon quinoa salad to lemon chicken.  I absolutely love the tangy, fresh flavor it adds to a dish.  It is probably one of the main flavors that I will miss from summertime cooking. I still plan to use it well into the fall, even though it will feel a little bit off.

Have I ever told you the story of when my mom was given several boxes of lemons? It was a few years ago, so the details are a little blurry, but I think she ended up with somewhere near 400 lemons.  Anxiety ridden over what to do with that quantity of lemons, she came up with the only logical idea.  Juice them all, then freeze the juice in ice cube trays.  She spent several hours a day over the course of a few weeks juicing lemons.  Even though the skin on her fingers started to become severely irritated because of the acid in the juice, she pushed on. My mom does not believe in being wasteful. Thank goodness she had an extra freezer in the garage, because it still has quite a bit of frozen lemon juice in it.  She has enough lemon juice to provide lemonade for a small country. 

It was a great idea though. It is so handy to have a tablespoon of lemon juice ready to go whenever you might need to throw it into a meal.  And, she is able to make countless batches of one of my dad’s (and my) favorite desserts. Lemon pudding!

I don’t really know how to describe lemon pudding. When I told Wes that I was going to make it for him, he was picturing the type of pudding that comes from the box, which is entirely wrong. Lemon pudding is typically served warm, fresh out of the oven, although I like it cold as well. It has a sponge-like bread topping over what I can only describe as something similar to a lemon custard. It is a very simple dessert full of lemon flavor, not too tangy, and perfectly sweet. When I asked Wes the other day what some of his favorite desserts are that I prepare, this topped the list.

Lemon Pudding
2 eggs, separated
1 cup milk (2% or whole)
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp flour
1 tbsp butter
1 dash salt
Juice of one lemon, plus rind
 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a cold bowl, beat your egg whites until soft peaks form.

In a separate bowl, combine egg yolks, butter, sugar, milk, flour, salt, lemon juice, and lemon rind. Mix until the sugar is completely absorbed.  Fold in your egg white.  Pour the mixture into a buttered round baking dish.  Prepare a water bath for the dish.

Bake for about 35 minutes. If your pudding hasn’t set up and formed a crust like top, you can remove the pudding from the water bath for the last ten minutes. I have found I’ve had to do this sometimes. You will want the top to have a light brown coloring and it should have a slight jiggle to it when it is finished.  Serve warm after supper or refrigerate it and enjoy it cold!

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