Lemons by the bushel
We are very fortunate that we have an abundance of citrus produce, mostly lemons on a regular basis. They grow well almost like weeds. In fact, each day we must pick up the fallen fruits. We could just let them rot on the ground but that goes against what we are trying to achieve; living an off-grid lifestyle.
Guilt from Childhood
The idea of not wasting food has been ingrained since birth for both of us. Being told that we shouldn't complain about the food selection because there are kids starving in Africa and that we should eat everything on our plate. A great brainwashing method when you want your kid to eat Brussel Sprouts (really mom....not cool, still Love you though).
Full disclosure, there are some rare exceptions to that master rule. Recently there was zero guilt in throwing out carrot bites that were seasoned with our chili peppers. We discovered the plant behind a large row of plumerias and attracted by the shiny colors we were prompt in dropping those little War World II bombs into the dish. LORD was HOT. Mom, I don't care about the Africa card, that had to go.
Waste Not, Want Not
Mom's brainwashing worked very well because we're extending that concept to any type of waste and maximize our natural resources.
It doesn't matter if you are living off-grid or just inspired by the thought of it. Depending on where you live, each person can still make a difference in limiting food waste.
We are trying to improve our self-sustainability by producing our own food. We have started a garden using hydroponics that has been upgraded by a solar powered system. As the food grows into this system we are watching every lettuce leaf that takes life to enjoy a side salad.
Of course, there is a wait time for green goods to grow big enough to harvest. In the meantime... there are other options that are in need of a different purpose other than worm food.
Last week, we talked about how to make green banana flour. The results were so good that I abused my honorary Italian chef license and made homemade cookies. Our intended target ate them so quickly that no photo was possible. I should point out that I did leave a sign "leave me one or two" and by the time I got back from the store, the only thing left on the plate, was my own note. Thanks, hubby!
We aren't fully self-sustainable yet when it comes to produce. We are learning how to not kill stuff that is supposed to feed us. And by learning I mean, we are following Chris & Stef, who have been living from only the food they have available on their land. Imagine not one candy bar in a whole year! Great inspiration and kudos to them!
What Can We Do With All These Lemons?
As mentioned above, we have a lot of lemons. There are so many lemon granitas that one can sip during the day. I've got a childhood friend Osman, who makes THE BEST cheesecake and treats in general. I shared my lemon dilemma and asked for some guidance on what else I could use them for. He shared a few tasty recipes that in later posts I will talk about. I told him I would do my best to honor his recipes, in the meanwhile the lemon situation was still not solved. Until he mentioned the magic words...
Why Lemon curd and not lemon cheesecake? Hubby isn't too much into sweets and there have been a few discussions about his dislike of something too sweet as marshmallows. He just can't wrap his head around the concept of roasting marshmallows while camping. Or as he calls it "compressed sugar on fire"
Hubby looks forward to Sunday mornings because that is crepe day. The one thing he loves is having lemon curd in his crepes. Why? His official answer is they're not too sweet and they have just enough "bite" to them so I can eat more than one. Long story super short, we ran out of our supply from Trader Joes.
In the past, a few attempts were made to making lemon curd from scratch with mediocre results. I used the same recipe as before and this time was a completely different outcome. The current results outshine any previous attempts. A theory is that it must be the fresh lemons, that freshness does make the difference. And there's a conspiracy theory that when in Hawaii and this type of glorious weather even a lousy cook can win a Michelin Stars.
After the ultimate peaky customer critic had spoken, I felt vindicated and overjoyed for have finally nailed this recipe and to be able to yet not contribute to the monoxide environment's levels because I no longer have to buy it. The lemons are surely not coming for free, but as my sister-in-law calls it, zero KM food is unbeatable.
It's not difficult at all. If you can squeeze a lemon and make some zest, you're halfway there!
🌴 Have a bLife moment, I am doing it as we speak #truestory 🤙🏽