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When Life Gives You Lemons (and Oranges)…

LemonsOrange

. . .what do you make? Our answer: As much as we can! When Shawn and I first moved into our little house in 1997, we were fortunate to find our lot already graced with established and producing trees: one orange, one lemon and one pecan. We didn’t know a lot about how to care for them and ensure that they would continue to thrive, but we’ve made some mistakes and learned a lot during the past 13 years—and while we apparently still have a lot to learn (such as how to keep the heavily laden branches of our lemon tree from breaking under the weight of all the fruit, and why some of our oranges aren’t as juicy as others), we somehow manage to have a pretty decent harvest each year. Right now, the citrus is in its prime and ready to be picked. Though our trees are about the same size (and presumable the same age), the orange tree yields probably about 100 to 150 pieces of fruit each season, while its proliferous neighbor gives us about two or three times as many lemons.

So what do we do with it all? Well, we give some of it away and trade more of it with neighbors and friends who grow other fruit (grapefruits, tangerines). But most of it we keep! For the next few weeks, we’ll be picking, zesting, juicing and freezing what we can to use throughout the year. Sure, we drink some of the orange juice and make plenty of lemonade. But we try to keep plenty on hand for use in a few of our favorite recipes, too—including a batch or two of bite-size lemon tarts (from a recipe in The Lemon Lovers Cookbook, by Peg Bailey) to citrus-roasted chicken, flavored by stuffing halved lemons and oranges into the cavity before cooking (a method recently shared by a friend).

Right now, lemons, oranges and pecans are the only foods we grow—although we hope to expand on that in the coming years. I’d love to know what you grow—and how you handle all that you harvest!

And speaking of growing, I’m also hoping to expand on my knowledge of traditional food-preparation methods by enrolling in the GNOWFGLINS Fundamentals eCourse offered by my friend Wardeh Harmon, who has planned a 15-week online class to teach simple methods for making healthy foods. I hope you’ll read what I wrote about the eCourse by clicking here, and consider joining us! And you have until next Wednesday (Feb. 3) to enter a giveaway for free enrollment. Click here for details!

This post is part of the Tuesday Twister blog carnival hosted by www.gnowfglins.com. To link to today’s Tuesday Twister on that site, click here.

Please note: It is my goal to provide a top-quality, content-driven, ad-free blog. That said, I do occasionally include affiliate links in some of my posts. For example, if you click on the book cover above, you will link to Amazon.com, where you will have an opportunity to purchase it—and if you do buy it after clicking through from my site, I will receive a small commission to support my work here, as well as my own book-buying habit. :-) Seriously, though, I’d be just as happy if my recommendations inspired you to check out the title from your local library or borrow it from a friend. And the banner for the GNOWFGLINS Fundamentals eCourse is also an affiliate link to much more information about the eCourse and its offerings, as well as an opportunity to sign up when enrollment begins.

January 26, 2010   7 Comments