If Life Gives You Lemons...

Freeze them!  I've been reading Facebook posts and Pinterest pins for a few months about the amazing health benefits of lemons.  I'm a skeptic by nature, and I have to admit that I skimmed them and immediately disregarded them.  Lemons, curing cancer?  I don't know.

The first time I actually read a complete post about this lemon-freezing phenomenon, my brain's little lightbulb went on.  Whether or not I believed in all the health benefits, I know that lemons are full of two things; Vitamin C and flavor.  So why not try it?

Here's all you do:  Wash your lemons, really, really well.  Use this vinegar wash (which, by the way, can and should be used for all fruits and vegetables!)

  • 1 cup distilled vinegar
  • 2 cups water

For hard-skinned fruits and veggies, like lemons, apples, and squash, put mixture in a spray bottle.  Spray, rub in, and rinse.  For soft-skinned, leafy or irregularly shaped fruits and veggies, like lettuce, leeks, and berries, place mixture in a bowl and soak for two minutes, then rinse.

Then, dry the lemon well and place it in the freezer.  ( I use freezer bags so that I don't have loose lemons falling on me every time I open the freezer door.)

As for how to use it, here are some ideas:

  • Grate into soups as they cook to add flavor and nutrition;
  • Grate into cake batter, cookie dough, and pie crust;
  • Grate into rice and pasta dishes and sauces, especially ones that have rosemary in them (rosemary + lemon = Yum!)
  • Grate onto vegetables along with olive oil and sea salt, then roast.
  • Slice and put in water or iced tea.  It helps keep your drink cold, and adds flavor at the same time.

Because my curiosity is a formidable thing, I also did a lot of research about the health properties of lemons, and the results surprised me.  Lemons contain not only the Vitamin C I already knew about, but also Vitamin B6, potassium, flavonoids, and phytochemical lemonine, which is being used in chemical trials to dissolve gallstones.  It is also being researched for it's anti-cancer properties.  While not being touted as a cure for cancer, it does seem to show promise as a preventative measure.  These nutrients, by the way, are only found in the rind, not in the pulp or juice, so it really does make a difference to eat the whole lemon.

Frozen lemon, anyone?