Winter Blues + Lemon Ladies Giveaway

What a strange winter we’re having. It’s snowed only twice. I mean, actual accumulation on the ground snow – not wintry mix quasi flurries freezing rain stuff. Twice. Once during Snowtober, once last week. Its a running joke that I have reverse seasonal affective disorder – but not in 2012. I’m just as cranky as the rest of you this year.

Cranky for a bunch of reasons, but also cranky because of my pantry. It’s the same old story – too much jam. Too many pickles. Not enough other stuff. Typical, but still frustrating. Luckily, I stashed away some fruit in the chest freezer. (It even survived Irene!) I’m even luckier, as I have the California secret weapon to eliminate all winter crankiness. Its guaranteed to cure what ails ya this time of year. I dare you to breathe in the scent of fresh-picked meyer lemons and not feel instant relief from the winter blues.

I was introduced to Karen’s fabulous lemons last year, and I am as hooked as ever. Before I order this year’s batch, I’ve promised myself to finish last year’s. That’s right – lemons I ordered a year ago – preserved in salt and spices since last February. Smoked paprika, cayenne, sugar, cinnamon, salt, peppercorn and bay leaf have worked their magic and transformed the meyers into something completely different. These lemons are my favorite use from last year – they bring an an amazing amount of flavor. Blueberries and lemon are one of those epic combinations – and this compote is no different. Best served over ice cream or yogurt, this recipe is definitely a keeper.

Winter Blues Compote
1 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup dried blueberries
Rind of one whole preserved lemon (4 quarters) chopped fine
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
1 cinnamon stick

Combine all ingredients over medium-low heat. Cook until it reaches desired consistency – but be careful – blueberries will set up quickly. If you’re feeling impatient (ahem) mash the blueberries to speed up the process. Remove cinnamon to serve. This will keep well in the fridge, though I am equally sure it would transition well as a shelf-stable recipe with the addition of a little lemon juice.

To help cure your winter blues, Lemon Ladies Orchard has offered a meyer lemon gift bag to one SK reader. Let me know how you beat winter crankiness – leave a comment with a valid email address below to enter. Giveaway will end at 11:59pm on Saturday February 4.

53 thoughts on “Winter Blues + Lemon Ladies Giveaway

  1. Susan M

    Citrus marmalades, canning citrus slices, planning spring and summer canning……Oh, I just purchased 4 Meyer lemons this weekend….my first purchase for these beauties. Thanks for offering this giveaway.

  2. Koriann

    I beat winter crankiness by going skiing, but I suppose if I’m thinking about it from a culinary sense I make myself a nice soup with lemon (I’ve got an amazing recipe, if you’re interested). Or candied citrus peels. Yum!

  3. Maggie Drake

    This looks great. I am just sorry none of my SoCal relatives have Meyer Lemon trees in their yards. Hmmmm…..maybe under the Christmas tree for them, and heh, heh, heh, lemons for me in the future

  4. Angela Watts

    Definitely marmalades…..I adore nothing more than the smell and feel of citrus heating up when its chilly outside. I’m also defrosting the last of my Maine blueberries (not wild-alas) so I may just make this tonight….I’m also working on some pickled watermelon rind, got a great melon for cheap last week.

    We’ve only gotten three snows here as well. Which is super odd. I mean it was 50 degrees on the way to work the other day. In Maine. In January. No wonder our growing zone went up again…..dang climate changes.

  5. jwfong

    I take advantage of the winter by going snowboarding! Love the speed and it’s a great workout. It makes me want winter everytime summer rolls around!

  6. Solducky

    That looks so yummy!
    Organizing and cleaning always seems to help me. Keeps my mind off the weather!
    soluckyducky at gmail dot com

  7. Wendy Varner

    I melt good chocolate in the double boiler, add milk, and curl up in front of the wood stove in the basement on cold winter nights (like the ones we had last year). This year, I’ve taken advantage of the warm weather to run off the blahs.

  8. local kitchen

    Doesn’t this just look fab?? I just made my first foray into salt-preserved lemons: but I used regular lemons, considering my own shipment of Lemon Ladies gold too precious. But if I were to win *another* bag…

    Beating the winter blues? I’m like you: I love snow. And so I am cranky: cranky and more than a little creeped out by 57 degrees on February 1st. But, I have to say, I am not a fan of darkness at 4pm, and multiple days of grey skies gets me down. Citrus is definitely a big perk in winter: one of the few non-local foods I buy, I do it up right in season. Also: bacon. But that’s really a year-round pick-me-up, no? 🙂

  9. Meg

    To beat the winter blues, I eat plenty of lacto fermented foods – sauerkraut, yogurt, kefir (now water kefir!), kimchi, and more. High in vitamin C, fermented foods also make me feel happy because my body feels all aligned. Love it.

  10. from city to farm

    Oooh, citrus of any kind brightens up my winter. I grew up in Texas citrus country, with lime, orange and grapefruit trees in the backyard. Now? I live in the mountains of SW VA, where I’m LUCKY if they have fresh limes and lemons at the grocery. Forget about any special varieties.

    For my winter blues – I do yoga in front of the wood stove, or if it’s sunny, bundle up and enjoy the sunshine while my nose slowly goes numb. And appreciate that it’s only a few months until we’ll be in a new season!

  11. shewnanigans

    Today it is going to be 72 degrees in East Texas and I HATE it. I am a major detractor of the sweltering summer and the humid spring so I am completely furious that I am being denied a proper winter…well, as proper as you can get down South…So this winter, I am beating the crankiness and defrosting strawberries for a strawberry Meyer-lemon marmalade. If I can’t be frozen, neither can they…!

  12. Mellanie Johnson

    We are lucky we live in Colorado so we have many sunny days. Right now to make it to spring I plan plan and plan some more for our garden. I started canning last season because my husband was tired of giving away our surplus now I’m so hooked.

  13. Preserved and Pickled

    In order to beat the winter blues I spend as much time as I can in the kitchen. Lately I’ve been putting up marmalades and curds. I also like to peruse all my canning, preserving and cookbooks looking for those out of the ordinary recipes, and for recipes using all the fruit and produce I’ve preserved. I also compose lists of what friends and family seem particulalry fond of so i can make sure I preserve enough for next year’s holidays. Lemon curd and lemon preserves are always on that list, although my Red Onion Relish (which a friend tells me should technically be titled a marmalade) is very popular also!

  14. Julie L

    I have been cranky this winter:) I like to go and window shop/treat myself to lunch…if not I like to
    watch a movie

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  15. Carissa

    I eat all the wonderful summer bounty that I canned. But seeing as it’s in the 70s today in Austin, there really aren’t a whole lot of winter blues to conquer.

  16. Melinda Nye

    It’s hard to remember what I usually do to beat winter crankiness–we’ve been having weather in the 50’s and 60’s this week. Not normal for Iowa this time of year. But I vaguely remember relying on good soup and hearty stew recipes I can make in the crockpot so they’re ready as soon as get home from work.

  17. Keli Martin

    I beat those winter blues with my trusty wooden spoon! Haha! This bread baking, chili steeping, jam smoothering, Mama of five always invites friends over to sample my newest creations. Oh, chocolate and wine helps a lot too LOL! Thanks for the opportunity to win some lemons! Oh, lemons would be so much fun to experiment on!

  18. Devon H

    I beat the winter crankz by imbibing glorious amounts of hot tea (Earl Grey and Brandied apricot, sugar please), and stuffing myself to the gills with Harry & David’s Royal Riviera pears. I’m on box #4 already…I don’t have a problem, honestly…

  19. Megan

    My winter crankies are being helped this week by a jar of homemade peach jam from last summer! It was my first attempt a “real” jamming and canning, and I have to say I’m looking forward to canning on a much larger scale this coming summer! Mmmm… those summer peaches.

  20. Elle Ross

    Well, it’s hard to get the winter blues in Florida.. but if I do love to open a fresh jar of jam made from ripe summer fruit to enjoy with a cup of tea and a good book in my sunny Florida room!

  21. Susan Blando

    I give myself a moisturizing facial using some great products (I use Eminence, all natural and FABulous smelling) and just let the scent steep in my nose as the products work their glory on my dry, winter-blah skin.
    AND…I dream of my garden in the spring.

    1. Emma

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  22. Katie

    My winter blues would go away if it would snow!! I don’t mind the cold as long as we have beautiful fluffy snow to look at and play in.

  23. Rachele Maczuk

    Beating the winter blues isn’t too tough to beat, as long as I’m in the kitchen baking up something that includes either cranberries or pumpkin!

  24. Christina

    What a great giveaway! My ways to beat the winter blues: cross country ski or snow shoe BUT this year is very warm, so I’ve headed towards the ‘make DIY food projects’ direction- especially by making liqueurs- like coffee… then of course, drinking it post-toddler bedtime, in bed watching Fringe with the hubs!

  25. Pingback: Winter Preserving Ideas (For Experienced and New Preservers) « Well Preserved

  26. Zebbie

    Well, here in central Texas we have quite mild winters. This year in particular has been “mild” to say the least – I think we hit 82 degrees earlier this week! I recently discovered the joys of canning so I’ve been trying to do something new and fun every week or so. And it has helped me beat any winter crankiness – I love prepping produce, sticking it in a pot, and see what happens! I’m happy to see that there is something I can do with the blueberries in my freezer – I’ll just have to figure out what to sub the preserved lemons with since I have not attempted those yet! Thanks for the post and the chance to win some Meyer Lemons!

  27. Colleen Peck

    When crankiness sets in, I pull out the frozen blueberries we picked from our own blueberry bushes we planted last spring! Blueberry pancakes, syrup, ebelskivers, you get the idea!! This spring I will be adding more bushes and will be able to have enough blueberries to make jams, and lemon and blueberries go together so well in my mind!!!

  28. Karen

    I chase the winter blues away by pulling out something fun I canned at the height of summer for a snack, make some lemonade and flip the pages of the newest seed catalog and dream of summer!

  29. Dayna

    Here in ND, it’s an odd winter, too. We FINALLY got some snow that sticks, But I’m still crabby, I want my garden! This winter, I’ve really started to do some major canning with winter squash, pumpkins and some wonderful jams. It’s been a big relaxation to hear the jars “ping”.

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