Outside as I write this the wind is howling - true Brontë-sisters-story-style howling - around the house. Rain is whipping sideways into the windows, the dog inside is shifting on his chair and can't seem to relax.
Yesterday the beautiful old rose vine that had been clambouring over our front verandah for more decades than I could guess fell down, tumbling loosely over the little front garden and spilling over onto the pavement outside. I tried to pick it up and tie it back but all the tendrils have latched on to our front fence and it is impossible to shift that heavy, thorny mass. So I guess I know what we will be doing on the weekend. Also yesterday the little green patch of synthetic grass I put down out the back for Madeleine to play on lifted right up off the ground and flew onto my little veggie box.
And so it goes. While I sit and type in ugg boots and an old jumper and heating and sip a warm cup of tea, outside, you will find Winter. Deserving of the capital W.
But in one small spot in our back yard, no matter what the weather throws at it, you will also find a joyful patch of sunshine. Our lemon tree, once intended to be espaliered along the courtyard wall but long since left to branch out and flop over and do any darned thing it wants, is positively dripping with fruit. There is so much fruit we can't pick it fast enough, and it is starting to rot on the tree. Does anyone want any lemons? Hit me up! And I'm not trying to boast or anything (ok I am a bit) but these are the BEST lemons you'll ever taste. I'm not even kidding. They are sweet and juicy and not at all pithy. The skin is an almost luminous yellow, it doesn't quite look real. Except it is.
But what am I going to do with them all? Mr B has put a spanner into the works by not liking lemon-flavoured sweets. Crazy right? I know! So no lemon meringue pie or lemon butter or lemon slice... because I can't make it all for me, can I. (Can I?) Last night I cooked this recipe for our dinner, mainly because it used the zest of a lemon. I thought it was delicious but Mr B gave it a "Meh," so it won't stay on rotation. What would you do? Here are some (mostly savoury) lemon ideas I've gathered so far:
* Home-made lemonade (we love this recipe), although it's more of a summer drink
* Have you ever tried this handy tip for freezing lemons?
* Charred broccoli & tofu stuffed avocados with sweet lemon curry sauce
* Roasted lemon potatoes sound pretty delicious
* 5 natural beauty remedies using lemons
* Lots of great ideas in this Lemon Love post, not all of them sweet
* This one pan spicy lemon chicken pasta looks tasty and easy
* How about a lemon garlic vinaigrette?
* I think this lemon flatbread looks interesting
* Spaghetti with lemon, ricotta and spinach
* One of these days (!) I might try this detoxing lemon water, to be taken with whole foods
* Cheese ravioli with lemon basil butter sauce
* This creamy lemon poppyseed salad dressing looks tasty
* The next time I cook a roast, I may try this oven-roasted lemon parmesan broccoli
How about you? Do you know any tried and true non-dessert uses for lemon you think I should try?