Always a Bit of a Tart
To me, lemons have a taste that brings sunshine on a rainy day. They’re light, fruity, fresh but with a hint of tart.
They’ve been in the Americas for hundreds of years. Columbus brought lemon seeds along on his second trip to the Carribean. Early Spanish settlers to California found the climate good for growing citrus and time has proven them right; today California and neighboring Arizona are the largest growers of lemons in the U.S.
Lemons don’t have season like apples or pears, they are harvested throughout the year. This small yellow fruit has some interesting other properties. (See this video by Dr. Oz.)
The inside and outside of a lemon are both filled with lemon flavor. When adding lemon juice to a baked good or entree, consider adding a little zest -remembering that the outside can have chemicals on it if it isn’t organic. I recently bought a microplane, and it makes wonderful fine pieces of zest so it’s a good investment. (Commerically, the peel’s are also used to make pectin, the stuff that thickens jellies and jams.)
The scent of lemon is in the air over at the Gluten-Free Homemaker for her theme this month. This post in linked to her Gluten-Free Wednesdays carnival.
I’m sharing a recipe we’ve enjoyed quite a few times since becoming gluten-free. It’s a non-recipe because I usually mix it up without one, but I wrote down the amounts for you. If you like things spicy, a dash of cayenne would be great. If peppers and/or onions are your thing, slice some and toss them into the pan with the meat. (I’d go with a sweeter pepper like red in this, not green.) Fresh basil (3 times the amount of dried) would be wonderful, I just tend to use dried because I have it on hand. Whipped cinnamon sweet potatoes and green beans rounded out our meal.
Easy Lemon Basil Steak Strips
2 strip steaks*
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice (this was 1/2 a lemon)**
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 large garlic clove or 2 small, minced
salt and pepper to taste
Slice the steak into thin strips and place in a glass container. Add the other ingredients, mix, cover and place the container in the fridge for at least two hours to marinate. To cook, heat a skillet on medium-high, throw it in (no additional oil is needed) and saute until cooked to your desired doneness.
*I buy Laura’s beef on sale and freeze it. These two steaks totaled 1.21 pounds. This isn’t an inexpensive meal but much less than a similar meal out.
**My husband doesn’t like a prominent lemon flavor so I use just the 1/2 of a lemon to keep the lemon in the background. Extra lemon juice could be used if you would like the lemon to be more of a major player.